A local woman is to become the first gitana beatified by the Catholic Church

A local gypsy woman who died during the Civil War is to become the first female Romany gitano to be beatified by the Catholic Church. Emilia Fernández Rodríguez was born in Tijola in 1913 and died in the ‘Gachas Colorás’ prison in 1939 after giving birth. Sra Fernández was born to a cave dwelling family and earnt her living weaving baskets, helping to support her family in this manner. In 1938 at the age of Continue reading

So what’s all this about electricity prices rising 33%?

Given the mass hysteria online over the supposed electricity price hike, I thought I’d drill down and see what was happening. The first thing to understand is that those who react to the message are on the periphery of Spanish political in-fighting. Last week there was a concerted surge of popular messages across Spain calling for an apagón (switch-off) on Friday to protest against high electricity prices. Different political parties threw their weight behind one Continue reading

Christmas – it’s English music, English food and English cheer, the whole world over

It was whilst nursing my bad toe, sustained in an accident putting up the tinsel, that I started to muse on this world-wide joke perpetrated upon an unsuspecting and innocent world by the English – Christmas. It is an act of cultural hegemony that had done more than anything else to establish a single cultural baseline across the world. It doesn’t matter where in the world you are in late December – OK, probably not Continue reading

Tax on booze and fags up, no payments over €1000 in cash

The government has announced an important change to a law, and a new budget modification for this Friday. On the one hand, the law limiting payments in cash of over €2,500 will be changed to drop this to just €1,000. This means it will be illegal to pay bills over €1,000 in cash when one of the participants is a fiscal entity (company). And large companies (and those who file their IVA return on a Continue reading

What’s happening with Galasa?

Galasa is our local water company, supplying homes in the Levante and the Almanzora areas. It’s a public company, owned 51% by the Diputación (provincial council) and the rest by the local councils that make up the towns it supplies. In brief, water supplies in Andalusia are guaranteed by the local councils, who are responsible for ensuring everyone has a supply of fresh potable water (hah!). Sadly, Galasa is bankrupt and looks likely to be Continue reading

European integration is dead – until a new model can be found

The relentless pursuit of ever closer union has led to a wholesale destruction in the social cohesion of Mediterranean countries, and a lost generation that will take decades to be recovered Europe as a political union is an experiment that has been tried time and again throughout history. Only three modern political states have managed to fuse together such a disparity of different cultures into a functional country – the USA, the USSR and China. Continue reading

Early start to olive harvesting

A hotter than normal summer has caused the olives trees across the province to ripen early, forcing local farmers and families to start the harvest sooner than expected. However, the drought means that the average yield per tree is expected to drop this year. Around 1.500 people are employed during the olive harvest, mainly by larger companies that produce olive oil for the domestic and international harvest. But just as important are the small family Continue reading

Stamp commemorating a thousand years of Almería launched

Correos had a presentation yesterday of a commemorative stamp illustrating the thousand year anniversary of the Kingdom of Almería – 1014 – 2014. This seems to have come two years late, so I may be missing something in this story. The backdrop is from an early 19th century lithograph taken by Nicolás Mª Chapuy, whereas the forefront is a modern photo by Pako Manzano. The big “m” is the official logo of the “Milenio Reino Continue reading

Turre again refuses multi-million euro art donation

The town of Turre is once again refusing to accept a multi million euro art donation offered by the town’s old doctor. Dr Blas Carrillo, a now retired yet still famous gynocologist who is from Turre, has accumulated an art collection worth several million euros. Most of his collection come from famous local artists, or were made in the area, especially during the “Indalecio” art movement years. He has some 350 paintings, 300 sculptures, 512 Continue reading

Why the name Abundio was so popular in Mojacar in the 40’s

I was told today of an interesting historical footnote which explains away the popularity of the name “Abundio” amongst elderly Moqueros. It’s a great story, whether it be true or not, and so I recount it here. It seems that in the mid 40’s the registrador civil, the civil servant in charge of the civil registrar, was a man of sensible practical humour who had a wish to immortalise himself. Never having achieved anything of Continue reading