Wednesday, March 25, 2015

The news; President Rajoy: Changing Spain: & Driving in Spain.

As you may know, there was an air-crash yesterday. Am I alone in regarding the obsession with it on the rolling news programs as close to voyeuristic? Ghoulish even. Though it must be a godsend to them all, of course, in their challenge of filling every minute of every day.

A well-connected Spanish commentator endorses the view that pointy things are out for President Rajoy. "Behind Rajoy", he says, " the knives are out for a president who has the personality of a clam." Taking the shellfish analogy further, he adds that "The fear of the liberals and the Christian-democrats is that Rajoy will stick to his presidential quarters like a mollusk". For Spanish speakers, there's more here.

Changing Spain: When I came to Spain in 2000, the annual road fatality number was pretty dreadful. But a minor miracle has been worked since then and it's now less than half it was back then. The statistic for cyclist deaths is also now very low. But this, of course, is because nearly all of them use the pavements/sidewalks.

Changing Spain (Maybe): For the second time in a few months, professors and students are to go on strike against the Bologna measure which will bring the university system in line with that elsewhere in Europe for first degrees and masters courses. One result of this will be to throw most graduates onto the job market a year earlier. With 50% youth unemployment, this is not what they want. But I can't see them having any choice, however much they complain.

Finally . . . Back to driving in Spain: This seems to be a useful site. I don't yet know what it says about roundabouts - the traditional ones or the new turbo-roundabouts. I do know you get nothing if you search under 'roundabout'. 'Rotonda' is more productive, though 'glorieta' isn't.  

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