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Saturday, 8 January 2011

GIVERS AND TAKERS

I've been away for just over two weeks to the Motherland and three things strike me whenever I go back which are as one Irish man said when referring to everything wrong with the Western world, 'greed, greed and more ***king greed. Everytime I go back to Britain I can't get over the amount of fat *ucks there are trundling around like out of breath sea lions clapping their hands at the sight of pasties. We're not talking portly, bosomy, on the plump side either. It was a relief to get on a bus at Zaragoza yesterday and be greeted by folk who while not gorgeous at least knew how to keep the weight down and be easy on the old eyes. Whilst walking round Poole which boasts some of the most expensive real estate in the world I wished I had bought my sunglasses to water down the sight of people guzzling readily available foodstuffs whilst dressed in clobber that looked as if you could wipe a floor with. Even Primark looked as though it had gone downhill. Later that day a man on the tele was bemoaning the loss of sales from shops like HMV and Next while another was rejoicing the positive results at John Lewis. I was happy to not walk around Tesco's knowing as Alan Coren put it 'it keeps the riff raff out of Waitrose.It doesn't stop there and once again certain family members showed their true colours with the inevitable signs that they are in no doubt after what little money my elderly parents have. Apart from the obvious greed expressed in the size of my fellow men and women I can't help that notice so much is about making as much money as possible to ward off something, old age, death, starvation who knows? It is an indescribable feeling that people are worried all the time about it and it isn't to do with the recession, it has been there a while now. The Brits for the main part don't know how to enjoy themselves and sometimes their moaning is justified but it spills over into fear and loathing and reminds me why I left ten yars ago. I'm not saying it doesn't exist elsewhere and maybe in a different guise but it is striking whenever I land. I suppose Spain will follow suit as it has with a lot of things that start in the States and then move on to Britain and then the rest of Europe, which gives me about ten or twenty years before I move to a cave.
A good thing has happened while away and that is the new law to ban smoking in bars seems to have been obeyed. I didn't think it would but tonight we are going out to celebrate that it has and will visit Bar Rugaca the bar that has the last known Communist for miles, one Babby or Gabriel who I have mentioned before with his explosions and red face. He is mentioned in the local paper today along with many bar owners and waiters on the above law and while most seem to think that it is a good thing and that it is too early to say whether their bars will suffer or not Babby expressed his 'discomfort' at the 'tyranny' and 'total injustice' of the law and that it makes him feel bad ( me sabe malisimo..) to have to tell a longstanding customer they have to step outside for a fag. He adds that he notices fewer people in his bar and a change from the more traditional or smoking customer to a new clientele. Like tonight when we return. We used to go there all the time till he wounded me. Henderson doesn't take things too seriously but I don't like to give my money to people who offend me.
Which brings me on to the pub we found in the New Forset ( Forest even..) that goes by the name the Alice Lisle. Our bones were suffering with the damp and we stumbled into an empty room with an inglenook fire, sat down in our cords and tweed respectively, and ordered two halves of Best. 'Is this what it boils down to?'  I wondered but took solace that it could have been jigsaw puzzles, elasticated trousers and shoes 'you won't wear out' (sic) and herbal tea.
So all in all a good time was had, a few family things were sorted out till the next ones and I came home to find my wages had gone through despite Henderson telling me they won't as the accountant was leaving early for Christmas and wouldn't be able to do it till he comes back next week.
Happy New Year to all.

2 comments:

Brett Hetherington said...

I couldn't agree more with your comments about England, especially the making of money as THE priority. (My father is English so that gives me a license to make these statements!)

I expanded on this idea in this blog:

http://bretthetherington.blogspot.com/2009/11/trust-at-bottom-of-garden.html

ANA said...

I've just read your blog and found the article you posted. It's true that here in Spain I don't feel hassled as much as I do back in Britain. My mum always remarks that in Spain you can sit on a bench without feeling someone is going to bother you which always seems to happen whenever you sit down in Britain.I can also go in a bar here and not feel that men or anyone for that matter think I am odd being alone although I think that has changed a lot in Britain and isn't as bad as before.