Thursday, May 03, 2018

Thoughts not from Galicia, Spain: 3.5.18


Spanish life is not always likeable but it is compellingly loveable. 
- Christopher Howse: A Pilgrim in Spain. 

If you've arrived here because of an interest in Galicia or Pontevedra, see my web page here.

CAMINO NOTES
  • On our final day yesterday, we checked and confirmed that you get different results from Google Maps on different phones. And/or between a phone and a laptop. I'm now convinced that it's not a computer giving advice but some human nerd with a grudge. Or a machine with sufficient AI to have developed a twisted sense of humour.
  • A propos . . . Last night Google sent us to a street some 500m away from where the hotel really was, with the map on the screen bearing little relationship to actuality.
  • All that said, like my GPS, Google Maps isn't always infuriatingly wrong and can be invaluable at times.
  • Here's that Information 'oficina' in Utrera:-
  • May is the month when Spaniards take to the streets to throw fiesta after fiesta, says The Local in its intro to this list of 10 Fun Things to Do this month. I wonder how this distinguishes May from most other months of the year. Or at least those of the spring, summer and autumn . . .
  • Which reminds me . . . Here's a conversation with the receptionist in a Mesón 'in' (i. e. 2km from) Arcos de la Frontera last night:-
Do you have a room for tonight?
No, we just filled the last one.
Hmm. booking.com says you have a room available.
Well, we don't. There's a big motorbike race at the circuit in Jerez tomorrow and we're fully booked through that.
By the way, what's the price of your rooms?
€125 a night.
That's odd. Booking.com says they're 92, reduced to 50.
Oh! . . . I don't know anything about that. News to me.
  • This was shortly after we'd called the owner of a B&B where booking.com said there was a room available and had been told they were closed for the day. Sometimes it doesn't do to leave things to the last moment, when everyone one else is doing this just ahead of a big event. 
  • En passant, one place we checked offered us a room for €100, as against 33 on booking.com. Later in May - after the race - it's 33.
  • Wouldn't you know it . . . On the last night of our 8 day camino, we've finally lucked into a place where the internet does actually work a few metres away from the office where the modem (ruter) is. Mind you, it's a room in a B&B place, so not terribly big.
  • Down here in Andalucia, it's hard to get a dry white wine. At best you'll be offered something which is semi-dry. Of course, everything on offer is usually pretty local.
  • Asking for a Nestle tea in a bar yesterday, I pronounced it as Nes, only to be asked if I wanted Nes . . .
ODDS AND SODS
  • Consumer authorities in Spain have 'named and shamed' a total of 23 products on sale purporting to work 'diet miracles' and aid weight loss, and reveal that there is currently no real control over advertising or distribution of these goods. More on this here. One born every minute.
  • Travel hints from El País.
  • And here's The Local's list of the 10 best Paradors in Spain. Again.
FOTO GALLERY
  • A bar in Utrera. On a corner . . .


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