Thursday, June 06, 2019

Thoughts from Galicia, Spain: 6.6.19

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

Note: As it's Thursday, a few of the items below have been borrowed from Lenox Napier's Business Over Tapas of yesterday.

Spain 
1. Driving in Spain: I've been re-reading my write-up of my long trip around southern Spain a year ago and smiled at this blog comment of 14 May:- So good are Spain's roads these days that driving around much of southern Spain in the last 3+ weeks has been a consistent pleasure. Apart from the ever-changing speed limits, that is. On these, I've tried - as ever - to religiously obey the restrictions but won't, of course, be surprised to get notices of fines in my mail over the next month. Así son las cosas. Just another tax. I have the cash ready for at least one . . . Postscript: Need I add that awaiting me at home was a fine for speeding just after I'd joined the A7 motorway up from Herradura on 6 May. For exceeding 50kph. On an autovía/motorway.  
Of course, you know that - despite my diligent attempts to avoid them - I got yet another fine a couple of weeks ago. As I said a year ago, effectively just another tax. Which reminds me . . .
2. It's income tax declaration time and I've been preparing mine. These days you can only do this on the internet in Spain and I've gone through the process of registering and getting my data from the Hacienda. How one does this seems to change every year and this time I had to enter both my NIE number and a supplementary number. There's no such number on the green A4 NIE certificate issued to non-Spanish EU residents these days, but it was in the top right hand corner of the residence card (tarjeta de residencia) which I neglected to turn in when it expired in 2011, 8 years ago. Which doesn't seem quite right. Though I was relieved to find it there as, otherwise I'd have had to try one of the other options, which experience suggests would not have been easy.
3. A warning re fraudulent cloning of your phone's SIM card.

UK Politics
  • Richard North today: The current political environment is beginning to look more and more complex. The wonder is that anyone would want to be prime minister in such uncertain times. A sentiment I think I've expressed at least once.
The EU
  • The EU's sea rescue operation would surely be more effective if it had some boats. 'Poisonous politics' means that it doesn't, says The Economist.
The USA
  • What can one say about Fart's wreckage of a tour through the UK, Ireland and France? Best just to watch the US nightly satire shows. And shed tears. Some of them of laughter. Meanwhile . . .
Spanish
Finally . . .
  • You might not be aware that the USA declared war on Spain in 1898 and, as a result, became a colonial power. Though most modern Americans might dispute this label, seeing themselves as 'exceptional'. Lenox has posted this interesting video on the event which - literally - sparked/inflamed the war. Which was truly disastrous for Spain.

1 comment:

Maria said...

Spanish stubborness comes through in the 1898 war, especially in the actions of the Last of the Philippines and their refusal to believe the war had ended and that Spain had lost.

The Spanish-American war was a commercial one if ever there was one. In the end, though, Spain came off fortified. The maintenance of its last colonies had been taking a toll on Spain economically and socially. Too many men conscripted, too much money lost against insurrections. After that, their foreign troops remained close to home, in Morocco and other parts of western Africa.