22 September 2021  

Night’s candles are burnt out, and jocund day stands tiptoe on the misty mountain tops

Spanish life isn’t always likeable but it is compellingly loveable. 

– Christopher Howse: ‘A Pilgrim in Spain’

Cosas de España/Galiza 

The EU, says this writer, doesn’t understand the problems with the Spanish judicial system and doesn’t appear to care about the damage being done to democracy here. Spain is not Poland or Hungary, it seems.

If you’ve worked here and are entitled to a Spanish State pension, it’ll last you the second-longest of any country on earth. And the winner is . . . . France. See here for the rest of the Top 10.

Squatters/Okupas: Needless to say, there’s a completed guide on the net on how to go about this successfully. Separately, the police have confirmed that using intimidation is illegal.

The VdG bemoans the fact that, except in one case, Tripadvisor’s Number 1 restaurants in Galicia don’t coincide with the opinion of the Michelin guide. Particularly painful is the fact that most of them don’t go in for traditional Galician food. For what it’s worth, here are some of them:-

A Coruña: Terreo Cocina Casual[?]

Santiago, A Noiesa 

Lugo: di Totó, a pizzeria

Vigo: Zebu, a Brazilian steakhouse 

Ourense: La Estación de Loman, ‘The 3rd best hamburger in Spain and the best in Galicia’. 

Pontevedra: Dükela – A Moroccan place. Probably popular because of the 3 positive reviews from its best customer – me.

Talking of eating . . . Is it now permitted in Galicia/Spain to smoke at tables? I see this happening increasingly on our terrazas.

Some interesting stamps that ‘pilgrims’ can use to prove they’ve walked at least 100km and so can get their certificate (Compostela) in Santiago:-

Today the plumber is here for the 3rd time in a week, to deal with a lawn-irrigation pipe which has ruptured 6 times in recent years, each time forcing me – before repair could begin – to either lose all the water in the reserve tank or save it in buckets, pans and even the baths. Ironically, in 20 years I’ve never used the bloody irrigation system. And didn’t even know it was there until recently. After today, a new tap in a stronger tube will, I hope, mean this won’t happen again. I do have fotos of the tube and the repairs in it but have decided these would be even more boring than this paragraph.

The UK 

 As I said yesterday . . . No, not everything can be blamed on Brexit. Like the HGV driver shortage, the energy crunch has little to do with our exit from the EU. . . . I don’t pretend that Brexit hasn’t caused some bumps in the road, but the relish with which otherwise sane commentators rush like sheep to embrace every negative story and blame it on the fact we’ve left the EU is risible. This week energy prices have overtaken the shortage of HGV drivers as the latest Brexit punchbag. Lest we forget, Germany, France and even the US are also experiencing driver shortages.

As regards energy and its prices . . . AEP: China and Russia will determine Britain’s winter fate. The careless failure – [of several governments over 2 decades] to heed warning signs leaves the UK at the mercy of the Kremlin and the weather to avert a disaster.


Fair comment? As someone who was born in France, understands their reactions better than most and is often caught between annoyance and admiration at their stubborn attitudes, I can’t help but look ahead with a sinking heart at the catalogue of deliberate French obstructions that will make our lives more difficult over the months and years to come. Make no mistake: obstruction is a national characteristic of theirs.  

Quote of the Day

If sulking were an Olympic sport, France would win gold every time. Doesn’t seem to stop them living long.


New to me, and to my spellcheck: Pensionerhood.

Finally  . . .

Nostalgia can reach back a long way. Flicking through country songs on Spotify, just seeing the title of this song rushed me back to my year teaching in the Seychelles (yes!) when I was just 18. And where Mr Reeves was never off the radio.

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