5 April 2022: Localism; Dental doubts; Russian Hell; ‘Baraka’; & Other stuff

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   

In a book about black money and corruption – of which more anon – I read last night that: What is regarded as dishonesty in countries well indoctrinated with political ideals may appear as morally in order in a society where the bonds of kinship are strong. Very true, I thought, as someone who’s lived in 2 very corrupt countries and now lives in a country where corruption is not exactly unknown.

Here’s advice from 3 dentists re a fistula in my gum, at reducing levels of cost. Each of them after an x-ray:-

1. There’s something in the root canal. Have the tooth taken out and an implant inserted.

2. There’s an infection below the tooth. Have root canal work done.

3. Ignore it. There’s nothing on the X-ray. If you have pain in the gum, take this antibiotic.

Researching with Mr Google last night, I came across this advice: If you’re in pain it’s still important to be wary. Make sure your dentist has your best interests at heart and is helping you make the right decision. Quite easy in my case, as  I’m not in pain and, more importantly, the 3rd dentist is a close friend. And trustworthy. As for the others . . . 

BTW: A dentist acquaintance in the UK once confided in me it was easy to become very rich as a private dentist. Perhaps this explains the rash of high-street dental surgeries in Pontevedra city in the last few years. I know of at least 5. They crop up like jewellers. And health food shops. While lots of other retail outlets close down.

Wow! A 2nd case. Someone rode past my front gate on an e-scooter yesterday, both on the road and wearing a helmet! BTW . . . I’ve noted that those obeying the new law have been 100% female so far. But it’s early days.

There’s a fascinating(?) ad on British TV for the 100% electric Cupra ‘Born’. In case you don’t know, Cupra is really SEAT, which is really Volkswagen. Not that you’d know it from the ad.

María’s Beginning Over 13:  Past is Present.


It’s reported that local versions of MacDonalds and IKEA have been set up. This got me recalling an old Soviet-era joke about capitalist and communist Hells, each featuring people lying on their backs with planks on top of them and tractors going backwards and forwards over them. When a newcomer queries the Devil’s claim that the communist Hell is less bad than the capitalist version, Old Nick replies: “Well, you see, in the communist hell  . . . sometimes no planks, sometimes no tractors, sometimes no petrol.” So, if IKEA products are hard to assemble when bought from a genuine store, imagine what they’ll be like now in Russia.

But, of course, the war is no laughing matter and here is Richard North on the latest developments this morning. His last para reads: Nothing suggests we are anywhere close to a resolution of this miserable war. Sooner or later, we will have to decide whether a long, festering war is to become part of the political backdrop of Europe, or we up the ante and bring it to an end. Sadly, there are no easy choices or happy endings.


It’s not all bad news . . . Trump’s ‘Truth Social’ app is branded a disaster

And we all thought we’d seen the last of this mad woman . . .  Donald Trump has endorsed Sarah Palin in the race for Alaska’s sole congressional seat. One bad turn deserves another . . . “Sarah shocked many when she endorsed me very early in 2016″, said Trump “And we won big[ly]. Now, it’s my turn!”


I came across the word baraka in a Spanish article yesterday, taking me down a rabbit-hole:-

Spanish: La baraka: 1. En Marruecos, protección divina de la que disfrutan jerifes o morabitos. 2. Fortuna (suerte favorable).

English: Baraka: A blessing that is regarded in various Eastern religions as an indwelling spiritual force and divine gift inhering in saints, charismatic leaders, and natural objects


1. Descendiente de Mahoma por su hija Fátima, esposa de Alí.

2. Individuo de la dinastía reinante en Marruecos.

3. Jefe superior de la ciudad de La Meca antes de la conquista de esta ciudad por Ben Seud.


1. Musulmán que profesa cierto estado religioso parecido en su forma exterior al de los anacoretas o ermitaños cristianos

2. Especie de ermita, situada en despoblado, en que vive un morabito

Ancoretas: Anchorites

Finally . . .

 To amuse . . .

For new reader(s): If you’ve landed here looking for info on Galicia or Pontevedra, try here. If you’re passing through Pontevedra on the Camino, you’ll find a guide to the city there.