Manos Limpias: You'll recall this is a right-wing organisation fond of taking legal action against those they don't like, such as the left-wing judge, Baltasar Garzón. And you'll also remember its boss was recently arrested for financial finangling. Well, it's now alleged that the organisation tried to blackmail Princess Cristina to the tune of €3 million via the threat of a suit for various fiscal offences. Spanish corruption at its finest.
Foreigners' Residence Cards/ID Documents: Just in case anyone is in doubt . . . A dialogue with several folk yesterday confirmed that Spaniards and non-EU citizens (such as Americans) can get a small, laminated Residence/ID card, but EU citizens can only get an A4 size 'certificate' which has your NIE(tax) number but no foto. For ID purposes, it's useless. So, we're instructed to carry another form of ID - which might be a library card, a driving licence or a passport, depending on who's asking. The only plausible reason for this madness is that the certificate is permanent whereas my US friends, for example, must regularly renew theirs. Some smart EU residents are known to have failed to hand in their old residence cards and still use them now, despite the fact they expired years ago. Only notaries will reject them. I'm told.
Pastafarianism: Or the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. I mentioned this newish religion the other day. Well, the first official marriage of adherents has taken place in New Zealand, where The Church of the FSM is officially recognised as a religious organisation, and members are allowed to wear a colander as 'religious headgear' in passport and driver license fotos. More on this here. If you don't get to the end, you might still like to know that the 'priests' are known as minestronians. Or something like that.
Spanglish: Two words new to me at least:
- Un after. This is a bar which opens in the early hours of the morning. Or as the Royal Academy has it: . . . Well, it doesn't, actually. But someone on the web defines it thus: Un bar after es al que vas después del antro o la fiesta en la madrugada a seguir la fiesta. It seems that Los afters(afteres?) see more fights and arrests than your standard bar. Not your standard British bar, of course.
- El finning: Cutting the fins off sharks.
Religions: Listening to a podcast on neutrons yesterday, I wondered why an almighty God/Creator didn't do anything to stop the invention of neutron, atom and H-bombs despite knowing well in advance they'd be developed. But this is only one such question we atheists have. I suspect “Man's free will” is the impenetrable answer that most theists would give.
Pontevedra's Police Forces: I cited 4 of these yesterday, just hours before I noticed a van belonging to a 5th – the Port police. Are there more lurking in the undergrowth?
Finally . . . On Friday morning, I start my latest camino to Santiago. From Oviedo in Asturias. It's said to be both the prettiest and the toughest of all the (ever-increasing number of) caminos. More significantly, it's also reputed to be the very first, undertaken by one of the Alfonso kings in the 11th century. Hence the name El Primitivo. So, normal service could well be interrupted, though I'll be doing my best to post daily, after tomorrow's final pre-camino effort.
Anyone want a lift to Oviedo from Pontevedra or Santiago on Friday morning?
Meanwhile, another cartoon . . .