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Showing posts from July, 2012

Second class citizens

We have house guests at the moment - some of Maggie's family and their lovers. Generally all we've done is to walk, eat and drink with the occasional museum stop to imitate cultural longing.

Yesterday we boarded the Tourist Boat for a gentle tootle around the harbour. It's a while since I've been on the boat so I was a bit surprised when there was no recorded "to the left the such and such fort and to the right the old fisherman's quay" - commentary. It used to come first in Spanish and then in English but now all is silence.

Anyway we stopped at Fuerte de la Navidad - Christmas Fort. Non Spanish speakers were directed one way and Spanish speakers another. We got to see an English language film extolling the virtues of Cartagena and then we were left to stroll the fort at leisure. As we walked and nosed I realised that the Spanish speakers were getting a detailed introduction to the fort. I joined in. Interesting stuff I thought. Lots about the developmen…

Renting versus buying

Despite having a house that we own - paid for, no mortgage - we have paid rent for six of the eight years that we have been here. All to do with where we work. I quite like renting. No worries about upping sticks and going, no problem with the building maintenance etc. Maggie maintains the majority view that rent is money down the drain.

Anyway the handle fell off the washing machine door yesterday. We don't deal directly with the landlord but through an intermediary estate agent. Now a handle doesn't sound like much but basically it puts the washing machine out of action so it needs fixing.

"No, that's your problems says the estate agent" "What!!" says I, "Wear and tear," says the estate agent. "And if the plumbing goes phut is that fair wear and tear? - it's their washing machine and they need to get it fixed." I was very cross and surprisingly coherent. I hung tough.

Having reminded them of a few jobs that they have failed to…