Wednesday, 1 July 2009


Well, here we are in July. We've passed the summer solstice, the bonfires of San Juan have come and gone, the swallows are around in the mornings and the schools have broken up. This means the young people have more time for a noisy and extended botellon, singing their way home along our street at five o' clock in the morning or thereabouts!

My bookclubs and yoga classes have all had their last meetings with a farewell coffee or beer, depending on the time of day: lots of hugs and kisses and hasta septiembre. Everyone has plans to go away to their pueblo, their casa en la playa or their casa en el campo.

Down on the Plaza de Compostela, Vigo's alameda, stalls have been set up for the feria de los continentes with goods from all sorts of places: leather goods from South America, cotton skirts and tops from India, delicious fruit jelly sweets from somewhere or other and all sorts of different kinds of jewellery.

Street theatre is also up and running with fun and games involving skipping ropes and throwing flour around at the panificadora behind the Marco art g

Even when there is no cruise ship in port, there are coach parties in town and the oyster stalls down by the harbour are doing a good trade.

Yes, everyone knows its summer except, it seems, for the people involved in obras and reformas! The drilling and digging and general noise-making continues all over the place. No wonder! Vigo is officially one of the noisiest places in Spain! Crossing the
street at Puerta del Sol or down at the junction of Colon and Policarpo Sanz still involves going through a complex maze of pedestrian barriers and walkways over a mess of pipes and wires.

In our block, two flats are in the process of being renovado. It's summer and the temperature goes up as the day progresses so work starts at eight o' clock. It could be worse: I can remember construction work beginning at three in the morning one summer in Andalucia!!

This morning, however, brought a new treat. A huge kind of hydraulic lift was set up in the street carrying building materials up to one of the uppermost floors. Naturally, it went squeaking and grinding past my bedroom window. Who needs an alarm clock?

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