Monday, 31 July 2017

The price of fame!

This morning I went to the hairdressers. The girls must have been practising their hair-dying skills as almost all of them had exactly the same shade of hair colour.

Scanning the scandal magazine Diez Minutos, I learnt that a star I had never heard of, Chenoa, a 42 year old singer, is having a bit of a problem. Her biological father, an Argentinian, is taking her to court to get her to pay him a pension. She hasn't seen him for 25 years. This has been her choice; he did try to keep in touch but she wanted nothing to do with him. And now he has come a ross from Argentina, demanding that she must support him. And according to article whatever it is of the Spanish Código Civil, he is is perfectly within his rights to do so. I am astounded!!!

I had already heard of cases in France where parents were obliged to continue supporting their grown-up offspring when the latter declared themselves to students, even if long past the age at which one might think they had finished their studies.

 So in both these countries family feeling is enforceable by law. Presumably it does not matter if you and the family member demanding maintenance have fallen out long ago. They remain your responsibility. What happens to those destitute people whose family do not have the resources to support them? Do they add to the numbers of beggars on the street?

I shall leave that question hanging and move on to some tourist matters.

What do Venice and Cambridge have in common? Both cities complain of too many tourists punting on their waterways. Venice I can understand. The people of that city find themselves overwhelmed by tourists. But who knew that Cambridge had the same problem. Apparently people advertising walking tours of the dreaming spires have been corrupted by punt-touts. They lead the unsuspecting walkers down to the river where they are persuaded that it will be a good idea to,go for a ride in a punt. Chaos ensues as too many folk try to navigate the Cam.

It would seem that visits to Britain by international tourists are up by 9% so far this year, and they are spending 14% more than at the same time last year, a spree fuelled by sterling’s post-referendum decline. Meanwhile, more Britons are holidaying in the UK, in part as a result of the extraordinary rise of Airbnb and other providers of competitively priced self-catering accommodation. It is all adding up to a mad summer for Britain’s tourism honeypots. Every cloud has a silver lining I suppose.

Meanwhile in Galicia the price of octopus is reported to be going up, mainly because of the "hordas de turistas" who want to try it. One pulpo seller commented: "vienen portugueses, franceses, ingleses ... muchos no hablan castellano pero todos saben decire pulpo perfectamente."

Whoever heard of people seriously complaining about too many tourists?!

Tourist excesses maybe!

I read that extra police have been deployed on the streets of Sanxenxo to "contener los excesos de la noche". In the first two weeks of July they imposed 32 fines for peeing in the streets €90 each and 131 for botellon €200 - group drinking is a worse crime than oublic peeing. This seems to have worked. The authorities declare: "esto no es el Magaluf gallego". It seemed quite refined when we were there in June but that was before the start of the high season. To my knowledge nobody compared it with Magaluf, a place that no respectable tourist destination really wants to emulate, but I did once overhear someone explain that it was the "Marbella del Norte".

So it goes!

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