7 October 2021

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’

Covid

Half a million of folk over 70 in Spain will soon get a 3rd jab. Or a 2nd, I guess, if they got a J&J/Janssen vaccine

Cosas de España/Galiza

There’s chaos in the Spanish electricity sector, after the government entered it like a bull in a china shop. It says here.

News from the courts (sort of): A battle over the Padrón pepper, a mainstay of Spanish tapas bars, has pitted the mayor of Padrón against local farmers. He had attempted to licence the Padrón pepper brand, raising anger and confusion among the farmers, who claimed the bid to control what can be marketed as a Padrón pepper was an attempt to benefit from merchandising associated with the vegetable. The row went all the way to the EU’s Intellectual Property Office, which has ruled in favour of the farmers, finding that only peppers grown within set geographical limits can be described as “authentic peppers of Padrón”. This encompasses peppers grown in 5 municipalities on the Atlantic coast. And I thought Gallegos only fought – and killed – each other over title to tiny bits of land.

Other Galicians up in arms are folk upset by the mocking of the Galician accent in an episode of the Spanish version of Master Chef. I’m told I speak Spanish with a Galician accent but can’t really tell. It would be logical.

Well, the weather did turn 180 degrees. We’re now promised 10 days of sun and a temperature around 26 degrees. Even more unusual is the possibility it’ll last over a ‘bridge’ weekend

Here’s Lenox Napier on the Pandora Papers and their impact in Spain. The final para is a bit of a shocker.

The UK

Some news I’d never thought I’d hear – There’s a shortage of psychiatrists in the country. Maybe it’s psychologists the UK is swimming in.

The EU

The Netherlands also has truck driver problems too, it seems. As well as both Germany and some East European states. Nice to learn the Dutch for ‘truckers’ is ‘truckers’. But possibly used to be vrachtwagenchauffeurs. Or ‘freightlorrydrivers’. The German could well be Lastkraftwagenfahrer. Lastwagenfahrer for short. Or LKWfahrer for even shorter.

On a more fundamental level . . . There are those who think the formation of the EEC prevented another European/World War and that the EU is a fine model of liberal, democratic government. And there are those that don’t. This is a review of a book which should be read by the former but probably won’t be, as confirmation bias is stronger than a desire to have your views challenged. A taster: What ultimately emerges from the pages of ‘Ever Closer Union? ‘is the EU not as its defenders imagine it to be, but as it really is: an oligarchic institution, built over and against the peoples of Europe. The author, I suspect, is a Marxist but this doesn’t per se mean he’s wrong.

The USA

Can’t help wondering why the Governor of California has sent me an email headed:- Update from the Capitol: COVID-19 Resources for Californians.

Finally  . . .

As I don’t look remotely Spanish, I was surprised yesterday when a woman at the next table  – after a few words in Spanish – asked me if I was Italian. When she then told me she was Italian herself, you could have knocked me down with una piuma.

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

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