11 October 2021: Poverty rising; Brits in Spain; Cosseted animals; Botellones-R-Back: Be-Stupids; & FB temptations.

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’

Cosas de España/Galiza 

Not good news. The gap widens . . .

Way back in 2000, Brits accounted for 50% of all foreign property purchases. Post Brexit, the number is a mere 9.5% now, only fractionally ahead of Germans at 9.0%, Moroccans at 8.3%, French at 7.0% and Romanians at 6.1%.

On the other side of the ledger . . .There are anecdotal reports of Brits quitting Spain in their many thousands, taking the unofficial total of more than a million in the direction of the official (i. e. registered) total of 350,000, and rising. But at least one expert says there’s no real evidence of this. So, Brits still remain the largest group of foreigners in Spain, after the Romanians and Moroccans. For now.

Spain is introducing an animal welfare law which – some say – will give creatures more rights than humans. Would-be dog-owners will need to undertake some training, it seems. So, more employment for bureaucrats and more paperwork. Which won’t worry the dogs but which will annoy their owners. Especially if there are fees.

Today is one of our (in)famous ‘bridge’ Mondays, between last weekend and tomorrow’s public holiday. Schools are closed but businesses remain open. But you wouldn’t have thought so at 9 this morning, when Pontevedra looked like a ghost-town. Have thousands fallen ill, or have a lot of folk used the day as part of their annual holiday entitlement?

I’ve said that the city’s sports and leisure centre has the stupid name of BeOne. Checking to see if there was a Pilates class this morning, I noted that – apart from BePilates – there’s also BeBike, BeCross and BeActiv(sic). But not BeSwim; the pool is still boringly called La Piscina. Those are all the (equally stupid) Spanglish names I saw but there might well BeMore. Speaking of the Devil . . . There’s BeZumbaBaby and BeHipopresivos. Neither of which makes any sense to me.

Life in Pontevedra city certainly seems to be back to normal. I can vouch for the fact the law against smoking at terrace tables is now being honoured more in the breach than the observance, and the papers this morning are full of articles on the return of illegal botellón (street/binge drinking) in the old quarter. This foto was taken in a street normally – according to a bar owner  there – popular with those 30+. Not by kids of 12 upwards taking his terrace chairs ‘to make themselves comfortable’. Or to stop themselves falling over.

And here’s a foto I took last Saturday night outside a nightclub I didn’t know existed. Not a lot of distancing:-

France

Having decommissioned most of its nuclear plants a few years ago, the government is reported to be about to reverse this decision. One can guess why. Stand by for screams from The Green Lobby. Some of whom, it’s said, would prefer us to go back to the Stone Age rather than use modern technologies. Possibly an exaggeration.

Finally  . . .

Back on Facebook after a 5-year absence, I naturally get many Friend Suggestions, including lots of very pretty women of all ages. I manage to resist clicking the Add Friend button, if only to avoid a lot of demoralising rejections.

That reminds me . . . One of the Suggested Groups is that of Auxiliary teachers in Pontevedra. To my astonishment, this has 129 members. Which surely explains why these days I hear so many young American women speaking a sort of English on our streets and terraces

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

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