Went to Spain for a week to see their Easter celebrations. While in the UK Easter festivities seems to involve hiding Easter eggs in the garden, the Spanish take it a bit more seriously, with Parades almost every night during holy week.
You may enquire incidentally why is some in the parade wearing pointy hoods like members of the klan? Actually this is a tradition that goes back many centuries, and relates to various brotherhoods (or sisterhoods increasingly) who look after the various floats for these parades. For some strange reason the largely anti-Catholic KKK decided to copy the uniforms of an overtly Catholic organisation :no:. Then again Americans (particularly those from the South) have never been known for their strength at understanding foreign cultures!
I also went walking in the Spanish mountains where it was either too hot (nearly got heat stroke the first day!), too wet (rained the second time for 4 hours straight, only people I saw were two Spaniards coming down who thought I was mad going up in this weather :crazy:, whereas I thought they were crazy going down because of a little rain) or too much snow (in the Sierra Nevada, yes 24C at the coast -5C up there). Also the small matter of the Spainsh roads. Some of which in the mountains are ridiculously steep, twisty and exposed 88|. Its like going mountaineering with youre car!
Anyway it did occur to me while away who we can easily debunk some of the right wing myths weve been hearing lately, notably from UKIP. They claim that Britain is a seemingly unique country that many in the world (including the whole of the EU apparently!) want to come and live in.
While I dont want to offend anyone, the fact is that Britain is a small cold and damp miserable little Island, with overpriced houses and a boozy pub culture and bland food. While many people want to come to the UK to work on a temporary basis (usually when theyre young and mobile), very few actually plan to stay here, as after all there are far nicer places in Europe to live (should you be enquiring why I and so many Irish are here, we come from an even, smaller, damper Island with higher living costs, more drinking and even blander food! :))).
Of course by working and then leaving prior to retirement all said workers are doing is helping to subsidise the NHS and pay the UKs pensions. I wonder how popular UKIP would be when people work out the sort of services cuts we would have to impose here if they had their way on immigration. And as for migrants coming over to claim benefits, only a tiny fraction of them do this, which costs the state next to nothing and the benefits paid out in many other EU countries are actually higher than in the UK (including those in Spain!….I know where Im going if I lose my job ;D ). And of course given that vast number of UK pensioners living in southern Spain, were hardly in a position to claim to be angels in this regard.