Thursday, 30 April 2009

Breaking records!

Well, it's official! I heard it on the television news last night, so it must be true! Spain is officially recognised as noisy. In fact, it's the second noisiest country in the world. Only Japan is noisier. I had never thought of the Japanese as a noisy nation but apparently so. Maybe that is why so many of them enjoy flamenco.

Some of us, of course, have long been aware that Spain is a noisy place. You only need to walk past a school at break time, walk into almost any reasonably popular bar and, here inVigo, walk round the corner from Colon onto Policarpo Sanz where the noise from the obras prevents you from thinking straight. Or you could choose the moment when at least three different discussions take place at once in the book club at the library, three different people ask for only one person to speak at a time and the coordinator just gives up on trying to coordinate the conversation!

One place which has been very noisy recently is Cangas del Narcea in Asturias. This is the home town of Jose Manuel Lucia who has just won a record 396,000 euros on the game show pasapalabras. As it became clear that he had actually done it, news reports showed lots of over-excited residents of the town jumping up and down and shouting in the streets, followed by the inevitable firework display.

Many roads in Spain will be noisy this weekend, the bank holiday weekend for the Fiesta del Labor, May Day celebrations. As the weathermen have promised us sunshine everywhere, an estimated 5 million deplazamientos, car journeys of varying lengths, are expected. Jerez in the south will be blessed with the arrival of some 50,000 motorbikes.

Meanwhile, our street did its bit to contribute to noise levels this afternoon. As the dustbinmen arrived to remove some of the 700 tons of rubbish (not all in our street, I hasten to add) which has accumulated around the rubbish containers, a queue of traffic built up behind the wagon. The dustbinmen indicated to drivers that they should take another route. There are at least four rubbish containers between here and the next corner, each surrounded by a huge pile of plastic bags and soggy boxes. It was clearly going to take a while to remove all that.

The cars continued to join the queue which soon stretched all the way to Gran Via. In a matter on minutes the air was filled with the sound of car horns, a standard reaction to any kind of delay. Still, I am told that this release of tension reduces the possibility of violent road-rage.

Glancing out of the window now, however, I see that bags of rubbish are again piling up around the container which has not yet been emptied. Perhaps this was just a temporary solution. Maybe tomorrow we will have a repeat perfomance.

1 comment:

  1. Can you imagine Barcelona on saturday following the football victory....!!?? eeeeii que locura!!!