Spanish life is not always likeable but it is compellingly loveable.
Christopher Howse: A Pilgrim in SpainSpanish/Galician Life
- Starting off with a large negative today. . . In a 2016 survey which asked the questions Do you believe society is broken/in decline? Spain's positive responses, at 78% and 69%, came second to only Poland's. Likewise with the questions Do you think your generation/todays' youth will have a worse life than your parents/your generation? at 56% and 65%, Spain came second to perpetually pessimistic France, whose numbers were 61% and 67%. So much for the trickle down effects of the 'booming' economy. The increased wealth, as in other countries, seems to stick with the top 1-5% of the populace.
- And now a positive, at least for Brits: Brexit won't affect roaming charges, it's claimed. But this assumes a trade deal by the end of 2020. So, maybe they will return.
- These, says The Local will be the most widely available non-tech jobs in Spain this year.
- I was surprised and impressed - to find last night that Galicia is home to at least 5 orchestras:-
- La Real Filharmonía de Galicia, based in Santiago de Compostela
- La Vigo 430, based in that city,
- La Orquesta Clásica Lugo, and
- La Orquestra Filharmónica Cidade de Pontevedra
There might well be one in Ourense too but I can't find evidence of this. Incidentally, one problem in researching this is that the word orquesta in Spanish has a wider meaning than 'orchestra' in English, covering what are called 'bands' in the Anglosphere. Spanish orquestas are, of course, kept very busy by all the country's many, many annual fiestas. And bullfights.
- Good to read that the percentage of false car insurance claims in Pontevedra province, at 4%, is below the national average of 6%. So, there must be some other reason(s) why are our premiums are among the highest in Spain. Drugged-up drivers?
- Also good to see the Galician Xunta is taking the greedy Franco family to court to get back the manor house (Pazo de Meiras) that was 'gifted' to the Ferrol-born Generalisimo by the grateful Galician people. Not that they had much choice in paying the special tax levied to buy it. Fraudulently, it now seems.
- Perhaps a more interesting court case is that initiated by the Xunta against the national Tax Office (the Hacienda) over the non-transfer of IVA(VAT) receipts suspended and then cancelled because of the (very delayed) approval of the national budge when there was no national government. Think of the Merseyside local government suing the Inland Revenue in the UK. I wonder if they'd have a chance of success higher than the average taxpayer. Which is close to nil.
- This article from Lenox Napier of Business Over Tapas refers to the law which prevents construction within a certain distance of the sea. I have to admit to being confused about what this now is, having perhaps increased from 50m to 100m. I'm also not sure whether the law isn't, as they say, honoured more in the breach than the observance. Certainly, at least one national politician has a property on our coast which is far less than 100m from the water. But maybe you or I would have our house demolished if we tried it on.
- Nice to see a planned investment in solar energy down near the Portuguese border in Vilardevós. The sun does shine here quite a lot in the summer. Rather less so in the winter, when the wind comes mostly from the south west. Or, as it's normally called, the Atlantic.
- Words of the Day:-
Finally . . .
- I found a 5 rouble coin on the train last week. I was rather disappointed to find this is worth about 15 centimos . .
- A nice question . . .