Well we arrived back from our holiday in the Sierra Nevada mountains and flew into a windswept and very wet East Midlands Airport yesterday evening. It is at that precise time that you appreciate your daughter arriving with the 'taxi' to whisk you home. Twenty four hours later the house has now warmed up but I digress.
We stayed with an old mate from my army days and his wife who have a rented apartment in a beautiful little village called Yegen which is I suppose about as high as Ben Nevis if not a little higher. The views are stunning and the weather was fantastic so you might gather that we had a great week.
The roads are challenging to say the least but according to my pal they have nearly all been improved in the last three years. The surfaces put our roads to shame and even though the hairpin bends take a little getting used to the drops have been well protected. Occasionally one can see the old derelict roads zigzagging to and fro and quite clearly travel in the Sierra Nevada has advanced into the twenty first century.
They are even carving modern motorways through the mountains and as the traffic flow is quite minimal by our standards they are beautiful highways to drive along. I wondered who was paying for this impressive array of road links.
"You are" said my pal. "Well not you personally but all this is being done with the help of European money."
This got me thinking because I cannot remember anything in Britain that is being funded by European money. I know of politicians who receive European money (lots of it) but when has the public actually benefitted from European money? If someone can enlighten me I would be happy to listen.
All I can ever remember us getting back from Europe are regulations. You know farming being harrassed about quotas, fishermen being almost wiped out by over regulation to such an extent that wonderful specimens which would grace any table are being thrown back and left to rot! The whole union is a monolithic, undemocratic, unregulated mess run by a bunch of people that we should be very wary of. It appears to me that honesty has never been their priority.
"So", I asked my mate, "What happens when they are told to produce things like straight bananas?" "They just ignore it", came back the reply. "They take the best bits and ignore the rest."
There it is then! That is what we should be doing...but...aah... I have forgotten. Spain isn't being governed by NoLab who have created so many regional governing bodies. Their role is simply to ensure that we peasants follow every piffling regulation to the letter. We have lost our national identity, our national characteristics and in my opinion we have also lost our guts.