Night’s candles are burnt out, and jocund day stands tiptoe on the misty mountain tops
Spanish life is not always likeable but it is compellingly loveable
– Christopher Howse: ‘A Pilgrim in Spain’
The Delta Variant: Now dominant in Portugal and has appeared in clusters across Germany, France and Spain, prompting EU health officials to warn further action is needed to slow its spread. While the strain still only accounts for a fraction of the total virus cases in mainland Europe, it’s gaining ground. It accounted for 70% of sequenced cases in the greater Lisbon area this month, up from around 10% in May. And for more than 20% in Italy and about 16% in Belgium.
The EU: Angela Merkel would prefer that Germany were not the exception when it comes to quarantining visitors from the UK. I presume she’s addressing EU members whose economies are very much dependent on tourism. But is she going to stop tens of thousands of Germans going to London next week to see the match against England? Shades of March 2020, when 10,000 Atlético Madrid fans travelled to the UK.
Portugal. Restrictions were put in place this week in and around Lisbon.
The UK. Says it all . . .
Cosas de España/Galiza
Those Catalan pardons explained.
Are the next Catalans in line for clemency the entire Pujol family? This has been virtual royalty in that region for several decades but, throughout, seems to have suffered from Desert Disease – sticky palms. Unsurprisingly, they’re said to have claimed to know where all the bodies are buried. Not all of them Catalan.
Talking of corruption, one of Spain’s blights . . . Here’s 2 extracts from Lenox Napier’s Business Over Tapas of this week:-
1. Sometimes it’s the innocent-sounding charities. In El Mundo, we read of one aimed at helping children with cancer which allegedly managed to trouser a million euros in 4 years. The family members who ran the charity are now helping the police with their enquiries.
2. In Almería, a local politician and VP of the provincial government was allegedly found to have been taking bribes from a company to obtain their Covid material.
The Euros: I’ve never watched a football tournament in which referees were praised so often. BUT . . . In last night’s France v. Portugal match: The Spanish referee seemed to be in danger of single-handedly undermining the good reputation that the officials have built up in this tournament for their light touch. A blow to Spanish pride. Prior to the mistake in giving France a second penalty, el hombre in question had been seen as having an excellent tournament. Will some here assume he was bribed, I wonder? Perhaps more so in our neighbouring country.
The USA/Nutters Corner
A Republican member of Congress avers that Israel and the USA were ‘created for God’s glory’. And that she was God’s personal choice for her post. This tommyrot appears to cause less head-shaking in the USA than in other developed countries.
Quote of the Day
If a sock disappears in your washing machine or dryer, it will re-emerge as a Tupperware lid that doesn’t fit any box.
I wonder if the word ‘shevelled’ ever existed. And, if so, whether it ever could have been applied to Boris Johnson.
The origin of the word Leviathan.
Finally . . .
Well-endowed African priests make a regular appearance in emails sent automatically to my Spam box. They seem to be very busy.
A ‘strawberry moon’ tonight, after Midsummer’s Day. So-called.
Note: If you’ve arrived here looking for info on Galicia or Pontevedra, try this.