Blogs in this series

Life in Culebrón is a disconnected series of pieces about the banal and ordinary of everyday life in an inland Alicante village seen from my very British perspective.

Tuesday, September 06, 2016


It's pretty hot. Yesterday I went to Villena to have a look at the Moors and Christians parade. The parade started at 4pm and, according to the State Weather Agency, that was the exact time when the day's temperature reached its zenith  of 40.4ºC. Just for my mum that's 104ºF.

It's a bit unusual for it to be so warm in September. September is the month when Spain gets back to normal. The youngsters are going back to school, shops are back on regular opening hours, the Guardia Civil shelves its various traffic campaigns until either Christmas or the next long bank holiday weekend. On the telly the new series are getting under way and, on the radio, the journalists and DJs who have held the fort whilst the better known presenters take their holidays are going back to whatever it is they do when it's not July or August. League football is more or less back into full swing. The courts are about to go back into session too so we can look forward to a revival of all the corruption trials that have been on hold during the sandcastle and siesta season. It's not quite everyone who goes back to normal because there is a bit of a move to taking holidays, amongst groups like pensioners for instance, at the beginning of September when the weather is still good but the prices of accommodation and travel drop.

The politicians haven't had their usual long break. They've been in apocryphal darkened rooms with beer and sandwiches. We've had two General Elections one in December of 2015 and one in June of this year and in both cases the two traditionally big parties have found their number of parliamentary seats reduced because of the emergence of two new parliamentary groups. This means that nobody has a clear majority and the politicians have all been doing the it's my bat, my ball and I'm not playing. First the socialists had a go at forming a government and failed leading to the second General Election and we've just watched as the conservatives failed to form a government too. There's still talking to do and maybe they'll cobble something together but positions are so fixed that it looks unlikely. The general view of politicians, always bad, is at an all time low - the word vergüenza, disgrace or shame, is on everybody's lips. There are a couple of big local elections coming up which may lead to change but generally the pundits are talking about a third General Election. Spain's Constitution lays down a strict timetable for the holding of elections and without a change to the law, which is in the air but which needs all the parties to agree, the next general election will be held on Christmas Day. Can you imagine the turnout?

I'm still on holiday, or rather I'm not working. It's just about now that the various education courses are advertised but the start date of even the earliest courses won't be till the middle of this month and the majority will kick off at the beginning of October. It looks as though I'm going to be back with the same employers as last year which is not exactly a reason for rejoicing but it's an income and I need to earn some money. With a bit of luck I may also have a second little job teaching English at an academy in Pinoso. If it happens, and I have personal experience of the problems of getting new courses off the ground, it will be good to be working in my own community for a change.

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