3 February 2023

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/Galicia

Several HTs today to Lenox Napier of Business Over Tapas for:-

1. The news, to me, that Spain has an ultra-right Catholic sect – El Yunque – which is said to be a a firm supporter of the far-right Vox party. The first rule for members is said to be ‘No one talks about El Yunque’. See here in Spanish and also the text below, in English. Just what the country needs.

2. A depiction of autonomous communities and provinces but not of the confusing comarcas.

3. The news that Miguel Charisteas is Spain’s nearest thing to Jon Stewart. But I’ve never heard of either so it’s helpful that Lenox says the latter is a snarky political commentator.

4. A map of the hiding places of all Spain’s mobile radar machines – the Velolásers. Quite a lot up here.

A propos . . . Needless to say, I laughed out loud at reader David’s report that: The cops had set up a speed trap on a dual carriageway into La Coruña. They had at least 7 cars pulled over. The one that brought a smile to my face was the last one, the Autoescuela car.

The UK

Worrying for anyone with male kids in Britain.

The UK & The EU

One can have a micro or macro view on this issue, combined with a near-term or a long-term perspective, and it’s always useful to know what axes are being ground. This is a macro, longer term view, which certainly won’t appeal to those with a near-term, micro view. On this, both groups can agree things are pretty bad:-

Although departure was a shambles, it brought about an adjustment that was always going to happen. Britain was destined to leave because it had never fully committed to an organisation built since the 1980s on the relentless logic of closer union, a single currency, a permanent bureaucracy and a supreme court. The voters were never asked to approve this. Given the choice in 2016, they chose the nation state. . . . The EU remains a declining, unreformable basket case; all of its institutional and cultural pathologies are just as bad as they were in 2016.

In short – We’re bad, they’re worse. As I say, not everyone will accept this. To say the least.


Amid the smoke of war, power in Europe is shifting decisively to the East


Where the US media has gone in recent decades and where it’s going now. Possibly to Hell in a handcart . .

The Way of the World

It occurred to me a while ago that separate facilities and separate sports categories might be an effective – albeit costly – way to protect the rights of both women and transwomen. And now the Italians have taken a step in this direction, with a jail exclusively for transwomen. As someone has said, the Italians – of all people – know what a real woman is. Strangely enough, transwomen are said not to like the idea.

Did you know?

There is a wonderful pianist who can transform pop songs into the form of jazz that I, for one, find very enjoyable – where there’s huge virtuosity but you can still recognise the melody. He’s now used his talents to transform Beatles numbers. CD out today:-

Finally . . .

I was too quick to say the pug is the ugliest dog breed in the world . . .

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.


The National Organization of the Yunque – or simply El Yunque – is the name of an ultra-Catholic and far-right secret paramilitary organization of Mexican origin of national and international scope, which declares as its purpose “to defend the Catholic religion and fight against the forces of Satan” and establish “the kingdom of Christ on earth”. The organization has several ties with politicians from various countries. In Spain its importance is both religious and political. ​The organization has been branded as agroup that is “ultra-Catholic, anti-communist, anti-Semitic, anti-liberal and with fascist traits”.