Thoughts from Pontevedra, Galicia, Spain: 16.8.21

Spanish life is not always likeable but it is compellingly loveable. 

– Christopher Howse: ‘A Pilgrim in Spain’

Cosas de España/Galiza 

More on the tackiest hotel in Spain, recently cited.

Returning to that list of great tapas cities . . . The other egregious omission, it seems to me, is that of San Sebastian, also in the Basque Country and famous for its pinchos/pintxos. At the risk of being strung up, I’d also say that Galicia is over-represented.

Sometimes one’s breath really is taken away. Once, in my case, on Bali when turning a corner and suddenly seeing a stunning panorama of tea terraces. This almost happened last night, when I read the headline: Real Madrid deny reports that the club has looked into joining there UK’s Premier League

There and four doors away from me, my neighbours have not only converted their garages into bedrooms but have also extended their basements into the garden, adding a room topped by a terrace. I’ve often wondered why but another neighbour has now told me they’re both absentee owners and have maximised space for AirBnb reasons. Which explains why the noise level rises in summer when they let their houses to groups of young folk.

María’s Not So Fast: Sunday musings

The UK 

The Way of the World

You live and learn . . . Incels [involuntary celibates] believe they’re ugly but try to be good-looking – via workouts, steroids, even plastic surgery – in the hope of reinventing themselves as “Chads”. In the UK at least, Chads are hot men envied for their ability to land “Stacys”, which is what incels call hot girls. They despise average-looking women, whom they call Beckys, for both being sluts and not wanting to sleep with them. Beckys are expected to have sex with them, however ugly they are.


I wonder how many readers would, like me, recoil at this headline from a major UK newspaper: A marine recruit who died during beach training may have survived if he was allowed a lifejacket. 

I’m alluding not to the use of ‘may’ instead of ‘might’ – a distinction virtually lost these days – but to the ugly mixture of tenses.


Further research has led to the conclusion that the diminutive for camino I heard in Pamplona was caminoco. The -oco diminutive is, I’m told, common there, so that the friend, Suso, who confirmed this would be called Susico and I would be Colinico. Which is rather better than Colico, I guess. Interestingly, this usage is so common among Costa Ricans that they’re known as Ticos.

En passant, caminejo is defined as: A section of hardened soil which people can use to go from one place to another. So, a clay path.

A propos, it seems I failed to add the link to Spanish diminutives and augmentatives, so here it is.

Finally  . . .

The latest Covid deaths per million stats.

1 Peru 5893

2 Hungary 3118

3 Bosnia & Herzegovina 2978

4 Czechia 2830

5 Bulgaria 2662

6 North Macedonia 2660

7 Brazil 2655

8 Montenegro 2617

9 Colombia 2396

10 Argentina 2386

11 Slovakia 2296

12 Belgium 2171

13 Paraguay 2133

14 Slovenia 2132

15 Italy 2128

16 Croatia 2032

17 Poland 1992

18 UK 1917

19 USA 1913

20 Mexico 1902

21 Chile 1882 

22 Tunisia 1819

23 Romania 1799

24 Ecuador 1776

25 Spain 1763

26 Portugal 1728

27 France 1721

28 Uruguay 1721

29 Lithuania 1661

30 Georgia 1609

Surprisingly, several EU states are worse than the UK. The other thing to note is that the USA has been ‘gaining on’ the UK for a while and will surely overtake it this month.

A few others:-

Sweden 1438

Germany 1099

The Netherlands 1043

Israel 715

Japan 122

South Korea 42

Taiwan 34

Note: If you’ve landed here looking for info on Galicia or Pontevedra, try here.