Thursday, 27 June 2019

On having sensible attitudes to things!

As we wake to another cool morning in Galicia, I read a few more things about the weather. The local paper tells me that Galicia is “spared” the heatwave because it is trapped between the hot weather front moving up on one side and a cold weather front moving up on the other, out over the Atlantic presumably, with the resulting cool stuff going on here. Which I don’t mind too much so long as it doesn’t rain excessively.

The report goes on to assure us that cool is better for your health. Three consecutive nights with temperatures above 20 degrees can be very harmful apparently. How do they manage in really hot places?

Even some of the sun worshippers down at the pool yesterday - yes, the sun came out with a vengeance in the afternoon - agreed that it is much better here in the summer than in, for example, Barcelona or Madrid. Fine and sunny and even hot in the day time but cool at night so that you can sleep properly. What sensible sun worshippers.

I read that railway lines have buckled near Rostock in Germany and elsewhere in Germany tarmac has been melting, causing them to impose a slower speed limit. Even better, one chap was arrested in Brandenburg for driving his moped while completely naked! This strikes me as rather dangerous. Imagine coming off your bike at even a reasonable speed and scraping skin off vulnerable parts of your anatomy!

In parts of France schools have been closed because of the excessive heat. Not a problem they would have here as the schools have already finished for the long summer holiday - even if the heat is not excessive.

In the UK schools still have a few weeks to go, for all except for the year 11 students who have just about completed GCSEs. It used to be that those students went on “revision leave” from early in May but nowadays, with the great pressures to meet targets one way or another, schools put on revision sessions. Consequently, three schoolgirls who missed a GCSE revision lesson so that they could attend a climate change demo in Manchester in May have been banned from attending their high school prom.

Now, while I think high school proms are a rather over-the-top celebration of the end of 11-16 schooling, surely it’s a bit harsh to ban the girls from attending. Reportedly these were three good students who had never put a foot wrong throughout their high school career. They even informed the school beforehand that they were going to be absent. If they had claimed to be ill on the day nothing would have happened. Other pupils with a long list of misdemeanours have not been banned from attending.

And here I was, naively thinking we wanted to encourage young people to get involved in things, have grown-up opinions and become responsible citizens!

By the way, it is with some reluctance that I refer to our secondary schools as “high schools”, another American import. I object even more to talking of going to university as “going to college”. College in the UK is for 16 to 18 year olds. After that you go to university!

It’s quite easy to understand!

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