Wednesday, August 26, 2009


One of Noia's oldest citizens

I said that I would mention an elderly lady in Noia and so I will do so right now.

Her name is Sra Carmen de Cruz and I believe that she is 94. She was a friend of my wife’s grandmother who passed away just 2 weeks ago at age 96 and may well be the oldest living person in the town. Despite this she has all of her faculties and we have got to know her over a number of years as we walk past her house on route to the centre of town.

Initially she used to say hello to us, and then one day she asked my wife a question about her connection with the town and from that day to this we have had conversations with her every day.

One thing that is very perceptive of her is that she only ever talks to us for 5 or 6 minutes. At that stage in the conversation she wishes us a good day and says that she hopes to see us again soon.

This is a lesson that many could learn from because it means that we, for our part, always look forward to seeing her. Firstly because she is a nice lady, and secondly, because she is not one of those people who grabs hold of you and will not let you go. You always know that you can have a conversation with her without getting caught up.

I do have a photo of my wife with Sra Carmen, but I would not wish to post it without her consent.

Footnote: 2012 - Our first visit to Galicia since 2009 and unfortunately Sra Carmen de Cruz passed away last year.

Monday, August 17, 2009


Banesto Bank, Noia, Spain

A number of problems have arisen since our return to the UK starting with my wife having to go back to Noia within the week for a funeral, and my computer being temporarily trashed by, would you believe it, an automatic microsoft update. It took me almost a day to find a way of getting into safe mode and running a system restore. God help any novice with the same problem.

Anyway, I set out a number of topics that I would deal with following our July/August trip and this is the first one - Banesto bank.

I opened an account with these people around 9 or 10 months ago and I was impresses with the meticulous approach to detail that they had and their apparent professionalism during the process.

10 months on they have convinced me that my initial impressions were totally wrong.

I started the account with a 100 euro deposit with the intention of making bank transfers as and when it suited me to boast the balance.

The first problem arose when it turned out that the online login details that I had been given were incomplete and this continued as it proved totally impossible to pay any money into the account.

Banesto were not however detoured by my lack of depositing action and they managed to make 4 separate charges against my totally unused account in less than 8 months.

One charge, the initial annual fee I had been informed about, however I was told quite categorically that there were no other charges. Put simply, an outright lie.

So in August I closed the account. No question was asked by the bank as to why, however both of the employees who dealt with me were decidedly rude. And, you guessed it, there was also a fee of about 18 euros to close the account.

Consequently the result was that, about 10 months after opening an account that had not been set up properly, that I was unable to access and that I could not deposit into, my initial deposit of 100 euros became around 14 euros.

Needless to say this is not a bank that I would recommend.

Monday, August 10, 2009


Next few posts

I sometimes struggle for relevant posts, but after some time in Galicia I have a number of topics that I intend to cover. So (to make sure that I have something to refer to and help me remember them) here they are.

Banesto bank – A good way to see 100 euros disappear.

An amazing old lady (94) in Noia.

How food (i.e. meat, veg and fruit) taste different.

Terrible July and early August weather

Losing the water supply and road works – an employment plan!

Getting home to a ready meal (put in the house whilst we were out by a neighbour).

Our new favourite tapas bar in Noia and tapas ideas

Fiat Panda

Probably something on local wines too.

For now however, I am busy catching up on things that were not adressed over the last 3 weeks - the negative kick back of a holiday.

The vacation itself saw pretty awful weather, so sorry to anyone else who visited Galicia over the same period as a result of reading my seemingly "promotional" accounts of the the place.

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