11 September 2022: UK energy prices; The struggle for impartial justice; A new brandy; A nice video; Portugal & Colón; & Other stuff.

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Awake! For, Morning, in the Bowl of Night, has flung the Stone that puts the Stars to Flight
And, Lo, has caught the Sultan’s Turret in a Noose of Light

Spanish life is not always likeable but it is compellingly loveable
Christopher Howse: ‘A Pilgrim in Spain’


The UK: In this article, The Times describes energy prices in Britain as ‘baffling’. I’m hardly surprised. One question is: How much higher are prices there than elsewhere despite the fact the UK is less reliant on Russian that other countries, and Why? Another is: How much does the situation owe to the strategic errors of government over the last 20 years that I’ve read so much about, rather than market developments since Covid and the Russian invasion of Ukraine?

It’s all down to the humble tomato, it seems.

Cosas de Spain/Galiza

There’s an almighty struggle taking place for control of – I think – the governing body of the judicial system. As in the USA, this is highly politicised. So, progress is minimal to nil, causing the head honcho to threaten to resign. This is how one cartoonist sees it:-

A Spanish brandy producer has launched an English variant of an existing brand:-

I happened on this nice video last night, uploaded by a young American chap who (largely)enjoyed the walk between Hospital and Muxía on the camino between Santiago de Compostela and the Coast of Death. His experience was enhanced by his ability to speak Spanish to the locals en route, though his pronunciation will have confused them at times. And not just because they were Gallego speakers. Here and here are pages on this stage of said camino, adding info on and excellent fotos of this part of Galicia to those of his video.


I’ve belatedly discovered that the Portuguese had not only been exploring down the coast of Africa for 80 years before Columbus proposed his Western trip to India to the court in Lisbon, and got laughed out of the room. They knew he was crazy. Bold, but crazy.

But they were a bit taken aback – temporarily – when his first landfall on his return to Iberia was the Lisbon harbour of Restelo. [BTW: I’d thought it was Bayona, here in Galicia. Presumably his second]

Quote of the Week

There are many socialists and young people who think a hereditary system of government is preposterous and they are, of course, quite right. It is. We don’t have hereditary surgeons or judges. So why should it be any different when it comes to the government? I’ll tell you why; because it works and the alternative – a President – very obviously doesn’t. . . . Look around the world right now and find me one president who’s not mad or incontinent or both.

The Way of the UK/Western World

The words used by the BBC commentators were ones you don’t often hear these days. And when you do hear them, they’re usually uttered with either irony or disapproval. Obedience, duty, hard work, humility, responsibility, devotion …  These were the qualities possessed by the queen, and with her passing came the understanding that the age in which this sort of stuff counted for something is gone too. We – those of us of a certain age – are mourning not just the death of a great monarch but the passing of our own time, suddenly exchanged for a world we perhaps don’t entirely comprehend and certainly find wanting. . . The verities – which we in our arrogance assumed were eternal and which evolved directly from the country’s experiences in the 2nd World War – are either vanishing or have already disappeared.

Brave new world. But, on balance, I’m glad to be still in it.


Possibly not very representative . . . Uju Anya, a professor at Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Mellon University: “I heard the chief monarch of a thieving raping genocidal empire is finally dying. May her pain be excruciating.” It takes all sorts. Especially in the USA.


How to go down a rabbit hole . . . Reader María added 2 new jerga words:- 

Cuqui: Nice

Choni: This, she says refers to someone who thinks they’re dressed super cuqui but are really vulgar and cheap. 

So, I went to the RAE dictionary and got:-

Choni : 1. Turista extranjero, especialmente de habla inglesa[!]. 2. Mujer joven que pretende ser elegante e ir a la moda, aunque resulta vulgar. 3. Chabacano, vulgar.

Chabacano: 1. Grosero o de mal gusto. 2. Perteneciente o relativo al lingua chabacano. 3.  Lengua criolla de base española y con la estructura gramatical de lenguas nativas, que se habla en Mindanao y otras islas filipinas.

Somewhere along that way I also tripped over celestina, which – apart from being a bird and a mineral – is also: 

Alcahuete/a: Una persona que actúa de mediadora encubriendo o facilitando las relaciones amorosas entre otras, generalmente ilícita.

Which led to:-

Encubridora: Alcahuete/a.

Trotaconventos: Alcahuete/a 

So, now you know . . .


El coworking

Finally   . . . .

To amuse . . .

Welcome to new subscriber: thefreeonline. Another reader with his/her/their own (anarchist?) blog.

For new readers: 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.


  1. In a week where Seur managed to deliver my 48 hour parcel in 120 hours to the wrong place in Mallorca, I was reminded of the end of the conversation with Seur CS.
    ” ….. claro y luego todo depende del pick-up.”
    “Del que?” Said I.
    “El pick-up, sabes no?”
    “Ahhhh”, I replied. “Quieres decir la recogida, no?”
    “Claro.” She responded looking at me like I was some kind of fool.

    On a lighter note. Since Liverpool last won a football match the UK has had a a Queen, a King and 2 Prime Ministers. (Sent to me in a meme yesterday).


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