• danivrial

One man work camp!

Herewith guest blogger entry from megadad:


Quite foggy round coruna so the packed plane coming into land suddenly lurched upwards with a mighty heave causing gasps and little cries all round, twice, repeated false landings, wheron the pilot announced, “apologies for the inconvenience, but I’m bringing her down in Santiago instead” Oh well, an extra hours driving for Francis, and for us bed at 2 am.


Jobs to be done: starting with shelves, you’d think putting up six shelves on a wall would take a couple of hours. But these were not any old shelves: 175*32*3.3, oiled sweet chestnut, lovely wood.

“Let’s get them dead level.”

“Where do the electric wires run?”

How to fix their supports (also chestnut) to a metal sliding door case? It all takes time.

And on Monday there are 6 more to put up in the classroom: a charming room with a wood stove, servery, loo, glass panel showing the strawbale wall, warm, beige lime render, high ceiling, with interesting windows and pleasing chairs (rush seats with plain carpentry all for 14 euros) and tables.

There’s a lot of clutter about, and it all needs getting ready for the influx in two to three weeks time.

At noon we popped into Cee for shopping and then went for lunch in O Pincho: the place was packed. About 40 men and one woman. 3 course set menu with wine and coffee for 9 euros.

The same as three years ago and very good basic fare. Chorizo and pork in a flageolet stew, followed by hake and potatoes, delicious and fortifying. Some fo the men were erecting 2MW wind turbines for the wind farm that was now providing the local income that had just made a fantastic improvement to the road leading to Francis’s house. The steep bit just by it was beautifully paved in brick, extensive polished concrete elsewhere. A lot of the other men were working on Muxia’s Parador.

By 8 pm, the shelves were finished and looked great!

Also we had worked out how to hang the other shelves. So we went down to the O Cruciero to meet the locals. Francis’s excellent carpenter they call “the Swiss” because he worked there and got the habit of absolute precision, bought us a drink having declined an earlier offer from Francis. He was seated with a friend so we chatted with a local man who was standing at the bar. He has been a journalist for 30 years with El Correo Gallego covering everything in this area. His paper is a local daily, now in decline, as everything is online including it. We talked of birds – snipe, woodcock (the landlord had been on a shoot where they had got seven) pheasant, and partridge. He knew little of birds, certainly not wryneck. He asked what was the rate of unemployment in the UK. I thought it was about 6% at 1.6million. He said in Spain it is 30%. So we each drank four beers and each time were offered very tasty tapas – ham, meaty bits, grilled sausage, cheese from Salamanca – and the bill was….12 euros!

We came home and watched Pasolini’s Gospel of St Matthew. That strong Sicilian light produces light contrasts and highlights only Bergman could match. The characters – Joseph, John the Baptist, The Magi, Mary, The Disciples – are extraordinary. With faces you would never find today, there just aren’t people warn by harsh peasant life anymore. Then there’s its message and its social import (we went to bed after the Sermon on the Mount).

Of course the idea that god is a man is laughable. Proposterous, ridiculous.

But the underlying music of Bach, Mozart and Mahalia Jackson, reaches the splendour of spiritual enlightenment within the film while all around us plastic, deforestation, pollution.

Shelves, shelves, shelves, sleep.

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