Monday, March 02, 2020

Thoughts from Pontevedra, Galicia, Spain: 2.3.20

Spanish life is not always likeable but it is compellingly loveable.   
Christopher Howse: A Pilgrim in Spain  
Spanish/Galician Life
  • Right wing nutters with arsenals aren't confined to the USA. One was arrested here last year and is accused of plotting to murder the Prime Minister, because Franco's remains were moved to a cemetery in Madrid from his appalling mausoleum in the Valley of the Fallen:-
  • The other day I pointed out that, in Spanish cartoons, plutocrats are always bloated and invariably wear either a 20th century top hat or a 19th century stovepipe hat. And Brits, as here, always wear a bowler hat:-
I don't think I've seen anyone wearing a bowler hat in the UK, despite living 4 years in London. But stereotypes take a long time dying.
  • In Silleda, here in Galicia, they're offering 1,215 civil servant posts. In respect of which more than 10,000 applicants will sit an exam (una oposición) this week. Nice work, if you can get it. I'm guessing one element will be the Galician language, Gallego. Without which there might well be a lot more applicants from around Spain.
  • BTW . . . It's said that the results of such exams aren't always objectively accurate. Possibly explaining why the kids of local politicians tend to do well in them. But perhaps this is just an ugly rumour and the kids really are as talented as their parents. That said, here's one case of alleged fraud from last year. For doctors, no less.
  • Which reminds me . . . The Galician police have discovered workshops which specialise in modifying tachographs designed to monitor/limit the hours of truck drivers. With total disregard for road safety.
  • I regularly tell visitors that, if you don't understand that the superordinate goal of the Spanish - apart from ignoring personally inconvenient rules - is to have fun, you'll never enjoy life here. Tim Parfitt comment aptly: The Feria de an Isidro is a celebration for one day extended, for no apparent reason than the sheer fun of it, into 30 days
The EU
The Way of the World
  • Covid-19: Here's Private Eye's medic with some timely comments:-

None of this, of course, militates against taking the WHO advice posted yesterday.

Spanish
  • Words of the Day:-
  1. Envite: Stake, bet
  2. Rada: Harbour; Bay
  3. Mortifero: Deadly
Finally . . . 
  • Aren't folk funny. Or Nowt as queer as folk, as we say up North. I've driving to Madrid tomorrow and so invited BlaBla passengers. One Vigo woman wrote to ask what size case she could bring. I told her that a suitcase would be OK and then waited for confirmation that she wanted a place in the car. And then sent a reminder. But no response. A version of ghosting, I guess. Or just plain bad manners. Not unique to either Galicia or Spain.

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