Monday, March 16, 2015

Russia v Spain; RT TV; Enchufes; Wild cats; Speeding; & Ferry fun.

I've been known to say that the Spanish are the noisiest people in the world but, having listened to 3 Russian men in the bar on this boat last night, I now wonder. I think I heard the word 'Ukraine', perhaps explaining why it was more of an argument than a discussion. But, then, this is true of Spain as well - every night on the TV, for example. 

Which reminds me . . . Someone has described a debate on the Russian RT TV channel as being 'a discussion between 4 people, all with the same views." This could never be said of anything on Spanish TV.

Another nice cartoon in El País yesterday - A couple of guys are standing side-by-side. One says: "Friendship is a great thing" and the other replies "After cronyism". Which prompted the thought: Being well connected - enchufado - is a valuable thing when times are good. But how much more valuable it must be when times are bad. When jobs are in short supply and the police are fining every driver who so much as moves. Such a shame, then that - being dependent on the personal connection - enchufes can't be traded. 

On one of my ways into town, I pass a colony of about 10 semi-wild cats living on a patch of land behind a fence keeping them safe from their canine colleagues. From this, they rarely venture out during daylight hours. They don't need to; cat lovers keep them provided with more than enough food. On Saturday as I passed, I noticed a sign on the fence. This advised that this was now a Controlled Cat Colony and is being supervised by the council. At a time of savage cuts, I couldn't help wondering whether this was a judicious use of tax payer funds.

By and large, driving has improved a lot in Spain in the last 10 years or so, at least when it comes to speeding on the autopistas I use. But there's always someone. The latest is a guy who filmed himself driving at 190kph/119mph with his four-year-old son standing between the front seats. Not content with just one example of stupidity, he then posted a video of it on Facebook, from which he was identified and arrested. Poor kid.

Finally . . . . One of the joys of taking the boat from Santander to the UK are the 'sights'. Today, these include a tall, white-haired guy in 60s, dressed in an elongated black jacket, a black shirt with a white collar, a white belt on his black trousers and black-and-white trainers. Perhaps he's a member of a 60s rock group. Or just thinks he is. Then there's the 2 checkout girls at the breakfast bar who look - and walk - like models. Possibly a reflection of the unemployment rate in France. And higher job specs.

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