6 January 2023: Happy Epiphany!

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’ 

Cosas de España/Galiza

Advice here on the 90 days in 180 rule.

More here on the ‘rave’ I read about the other day. Still don’t know it’s pronounced in Spanglish.

El Huff Post queries the ability of the leader of the PP party to speak English, Apparently not gtreat. which surprises me as I’m a friend of the woman who taught him in Vigo. When she was the honorary British consul there.

Lenox Napier of Business Over Tapas tells us that: The cute (and decidedly raucous) green parrots that have taken over Spain’s city parks are originally escaped pets: the South American Cotorra or Monk Parakeet is now considered by environmentalists to be ‘an invasive pest’. I don’t recall seeing any in Galicia. Perhaps our wolves eat them all.

I’m also indebted to Lenox for this article on religious observance in Spain these days. Or the lack of it.

Galicia cartoon no. 3 . . .


The Republicans are no longer a functioning party: The Speaker crisis exposes how a sizeable chunk are more interested in self-publicity and angry tweets than seeking to govern. . . As they survey a desolate electoral landscape and a new year that promises only more woe, Britain’s Tories could find company in misery this week by taking a look across the pond at the state of their brethren in the Republican Party. If you’ve been following events on both sides of the Atlantic over the past few months, you could be forgiven for thinking the 2 great right-of-centre parties in the English-speaking world have been engaged in some warped transatlantic competition for ineptitude, insanity and irrelevance. But while the agonies of Tories and Republicans have different causes, protagonists and outcomes, they reflect the same crisis of modern conservatism- More here for those who want it.

Lovely quote: The republican candidate, Kevin McCarthy, is the very model of a Washington insider, the sort of character who gives cynics a bad name. Unhindered by any visible convictions or intellectual talent, a journeyman politician who wears his beliefs lightly and his opportunism on his sleeve, he has ascended the greasy pole through a combination of bovine perseverance and unctuous ingratiation.

Way of the World

Read here about the new aristocracy of victimhood.

Did you know?

If, as in the UK, you can’t get cough medicine for love or a money, a ‘hot toddy’ is an excellent alternative. In my case, this is a mixture of whisky, hot water, sugar and lemon. And possibly some honey. As it happens, I read this advice yesterday not long after I’d resorted – in hope/desperation – to a hot toddy at 1am, after an hour-long surprise coughing fit. And found it worked brilliantly. Ironically, I never drink whisky otherwise, after an adverse event when I was 19.

Finally . . .

Joke of the week: In Russia, you can buy an Advent calendar in which every time you open a window an oligarch falls out.

Incidentally, I read in Putin’s People that this also happened back in the 1990s, when the Soviet Union and Russia were collapsing, amidst humongous violence and corruption. Windows there must be of very poor quality, fatal if leant on.

For new readers:-

1. 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.

2. Should you want to, the easiest way to to get my post routinely is to sign up for email subscription. As opposed to using a Bookmark or entering the URL in your browser.


  1. A rave is pronounced rah – veh. Pretend that long vowels and silent vowels don’t exist.

    Actually, the Russians are mimicking the Czechs, as in the famous Defenestrations of Prague. There really is nothing new under the sun.


  2. Just finished the 7th and final episode of Trauma Zone.
    I am also at this time reading D-day Through German Eyes.
    Putins People is on my reading list.

    It was the Oligarchs that put Putin power. I did wonder if before a very brief stint running the FSB, Putin had been a window fitter.

    My conclusion came to me in the form of the title of a well known song. “A little bit of history repeating itself.” Different actors, same shit.


  3. A movie that is making the rounds now and that might be of interest here is “As Bestas”. Won plaudits from critics all over the world. It is about rural Galicia and the problems that arise in relation to communal rights. It is also about ex-pats facing hostile natives. Further down the line it has been described as a Western, a horror movie and an environmental psycho-thriller. Perhaps, not the most uplifting sort of movie to watch if you are a foreigner living in (rural) Galicia, but some say the best movie to come out of Spain in years.


  4. Hai cotorras en Vigo, no parque de Castrelos e algún punto máis do sur da provincia de Pontevedra. Non haberá en máis sitios polos lobos ou polo clima, haha


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