Sunday, February 01, 2015

Greece/Germany; Politico (self)deception; Traffic revenue; Ugly fish; Billarda; Past View?; Gypsies; & Car trouble.

I doubt anyone knows what's going to happen in respect of Greece, nor the consequences of whatever it is. To say the least, opinions differ. But the view seems to be growing that the German sabre-rattling has been misplaced and counter-productive. "Petulant, even bordering on idiocy", quotes Our Ambrose, going on to say - "The creation of the euro was a terrible mistake but breaking it up would be an even bigger mistake." One thing's for sure, resentment against Germany won't just be growing in Greece. As I say, all rather ironic - creating an EU which puts Germany in charge, as a way of preventing a third-time-lucky German domination of Europe.

I recently listened to a podcast on lying. Needless to say, politicians featured large in this, one nice comment being that, like Tony Blair, they convince themselves of the veracity of their own lies. I thought of this when hearing this morning that Britain's Education Secretary wants Brit kids to be 'top of the class' in English and Maths by 2020. Given how low they now rank in the world tables, there can't be the remotest chance that she believes this is feasible. But she can always say she hoped rather than believed. Let alone promised.

The latest revenue-raising trick here in Galicia is to ban trucks from the national roads and force them to use the toll-bearing autopistas. Funnily enough, the transport companies don't seem too impressed by the offer of discounts.

It's lamprey time again here in Galicia. I've never tasted this (ugly) fish and hear it has a pretty strong flavour. But I must get round to it sometime, down by the Miño river, in Tui. Maybe this year. When I get over revulsion at their feeding method.

It's also billarda season. This is a sport which consists of flicking one stick up with another and then hitting it as far as you can. As here. This is the National Open competition but I suspect that National here means Regional. If you speak Spanish or Portuguese, enjoy the commentary in Galego. And remember that, as my friend Fran repeatedly reminds me, Galicia is not Spain. This paragraph has been brought to you by the Anglo-Galician Society.

The Santiago council is going to give us the chance to see their city in virtual reality, using special glasses which portray info about the buildings we're walking past. This facility is called Past View, which I think probably falls into Trevor's category of Fucked Translation. Personally, if I had to use these words, I'd call it Passing View. But there has to be something better than both of these.

The Pontevedra council normally deals with our local gypsy encampments rather gingerly. There are 3 settlements, 1 illegal and 2 legal. That said, on one of the latter there are illegal buildings. In the last week or so, the council has decided to clear the illegal settlement - by the railway station - and to knock down the illegal houses. Last time they did this, the various court proceedings lasted an eternity. So, it'll be interesting to see what happens on the scheduled date of Feb 3. I suspect the site by the station will be cleared quite quickly as it's in the way of road-widening plans.

Finally . . . Taking a midday coffee yesterday, I looked out from my eyrie in Café Savoy and clocked this scene:

After half an hour or more - a tow truck arrived and pulled it backwards up the steps. I thought one of the 2 police cars could have done this. Or even me. But then I recalled it's illegal to tow a car in Spain. Which is why my tow rope is in my garage and not in my boot/trunk. As the car was moved, I noticed the number plate was Portuguese. Maybe the driver couldn't read the road signs exclusively in Gallego.


Perry said...

Santiago, being steeped in nostalgic romanticism or neo-mediaevalism, I favour
Passé viewing.....

Barcelona's Singing Organ-Grinder said...

Looking forward to your guinea pig review of the Past View experience & use of monies. Given the problems Santiago council has with corruption, you'd think the emphasis would be on virtual rather than augmented reality.

paideleo said...

A billarda é un xogo que se xoga en todo o mundo e ten distintos nomes. En Asturies é liriu, txirikila no País Basco,bélit en Catalunya, pandolo na Eepública Checa (creo), gilli-danda na India,etc, etc.
Ata existe nos USA co nome de dainty.

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