Welcome to Left side of the road

Welcome to my new blog. A bit later than I originally planned but that’s how some things go.

Now away in sunny Spain (or Catalonia for nationalists) and plan to post at least one article each day. They will cover a number of aspects. I’m planning to do a bit of walking in the hills and mountains so will try to describe what it’s like doing so. Also something about the history and culture in the immediate area. For example, there are many and varied places with a still visible reference to the Spanish Civil War and, as in many towns and villages in of Catalonia, a number of examples of Catalan Modernism.

I also want to give you an idea of what is happening generally in the country, information I might have picked up through my own observations, discussions with local people or from the news, mainly the newspapers. Seeing the world through another country’s eyes is always fascinating and however ‘good’ such coverage might be in Britain there are always quite significant differences when seen from another perspective. Xenophobia rules in the UK, even more so at the moment with the ever-increasing hysteria brought on by the recent Olympic Games, but it’s certainly no stranger to Spanish/Catalan society. There would be a lot of broken glass lying around if that matter was pushed in any of the European countries.

Thought I might also try to give an idea of the food and drink.

Perhaps one thing to make clear from the start is that over here it is hot – very hot, and getting hotter all the time. There’s a heat wave over here at the moment and this has already been reflected in the number of forest fires, although nothing (so far) in the immediate vicinity. However, looking at the map, the forecast for the UK indicates this will not be a problem that many of you will have to face. Although at the time of writing I am inside the house where it is relatively cool the streets outside are deserted as people are fleeing from the heat, if it is at all possible. However my plans are to spend as much time as possible out in the fresh air and will be lapping up the sun, but even so I will be planning to leave as early as possible in order to be in the bar when the heat of the day is at its highest.

I’ll be posting as many pictures as I can to illustrate what I’m writing about, trying to give as clear a picture as possible with the technology available.

As this is a blog there are opportunities for you to make comments and I will welcome them all and try to respond as quickly as possible. A possible problem with blogs is that you can spend so much time writing and replying to comments that you don’t actually do anything new and different. Getting the balance right will be a challenge.

Whilst on the subject of comments please bear with me as I’m just getting to know the whole system of blogging and there might be the occasional blip as I try to get to grips with the process. For example, I have set the blog up so that I have to approve of anyone before their comments appear on the site. I will receive an email telling me that someone wants to post a comment but as of this moment I don’t know where I have to go to read those messages. Perhaps I should learn about that as soon as possible.

Will finish the welcome here as otherwise I will intrude on what I want to say on the subjects I’ve already mentioned.

Michael

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