Saturday, September 01, 2018

Thoughts from Galicia, Spain: 1.9.18

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. Garish but informative.

Matters Spanish/EUropean
  • Don Quijones is still worried about Spanish banks, because of their high exposure to Turkey
  • Well, it looks like the EU – based on German pressure and the responses to their survey – really are going to make summertime permanent. The question for Spain is whether it will also return to the correct time zone (the UK and Portugal) which Franco took it off in 1942. The newish government has talked of doing this. Vamos a ver. See here and here re Spain.
  • Then there is the odd Spanish horario. Working day. Way out of kilter with the rest of Europe. There are noises about changing this as well. Maybe less likely in reality.
Matters North American
  • Based on developments of the last few days – particularly some devastating (for Fart) survey results - I believe the only question to be answered now is exactly how the Republicans are going to eject him from power. Maybe the 'elegant' resignation I posited. Possibly even before the mid-term elections in November. But there is another question – How will someone with such a monumental ego deal with failure on such a scale? Possibly depression and suicide. If we're lucky.
Matters Galician and Pontevedran
  • Walking around the city before my (late) dinner with Spanish friends last night, it occurred to me that the busy street scenes were very redolent of my first experiences of Spain way back in the 1970s. But, I realised, with one huge difference. The 'traditional smell' was no longer there. Now you're more likely to get a whiff of coconut oil than the heady mixture of strong cigarettes, exhaust fumes, olive oil and – it has to be said – BO. Progress, I guess. Except for the coconut oil.
  • Here's an amusing tale of a step take to express just how important (Friesian) dairy cows are to this region. Nice.
Finally . . .
  • If Google Analytics is to be believed, I have very few readers in both Galicia and in Spain as a whole. Which would be a tad disappointing, if really true. I continue to investigate!
  • Welcome to September, the best month of the year here in Pontevedra City. But please don't tell anyone.
© [David] Colin Davies, Pontevedra: 1.9.18


Eamon said...

Talking of smells reminds me of my trip across northern Spain by car in 1967. I noticed as we passed through different towns and villages they all had a distinctive smell. It was the same here in La Coruña when you went down to the city centre where there was a smell of its own. No longer there I have to say and possibly a change in cooking has something to do with it and new buildings.

Alfred B. Mittington said...

Indeed the good Galician artist 'revers' the Frisian cow (as the article stated), given the fact that he turned the colour-pattern inside out... Anyone who has ever seen a true Frisian (not Friesian please...) is aware that the dear bovine has black spots on a white surface. Check Google image for comparison.

The true typical, signal smell of Spain in the 70s and 80s was the Azahar soap the housewives used for everything from floors to laundry to baby's bottoms. One rarely encounters that no more - but a Proustian deja vu is your part when you do...


Colin Davies said...

1. Thanks for yr soap point.
2. My spellcheck insisted on that form.
3. Wrong use of deja vu, says Amis. Really means something you havent seen before but have the impression you have. Not now of course. Modern use is hallowed by custom, however technically wrong.

Maria said...

I remember the smells when I was a child and came here on vacation. Back then, apart from the soap, there were also more farm animals in the villages, and probably a chicken or two in the cities. Now, the only smell to remind me of then is when I walk by a neighbor's house and I can smell the pig sty.