Senin, 20 Desember 2010


I can't believe it - they've put a fence all the way through one of MY forests that I ride / run through on my way to work. At least there is still a path I can use. But that's not all... I got to the other side only to find that the gate was locked, with a sign excusing the inconvenience and saying that it would be opened at 6:45am. The thing is, it was already half past 7! Luckily I saw a security guard driving slowly past so I flagged him down. He seemed to completely ignore me so I had to climb a 2m fence and hoist my chunky mountain bike over it. Unfortunately I managed to get a small nick in my lovely brand new GoreTex jacket - bah! By this time I'd managed to get over to the other side and reunite myself with my bike, the security guard had summoned the energy and initiative to come over and investigate. When I complained (ever so politely) that the gate on the other side of the forest was open with no warning sign, that it was past 6:45am anyway and that I had caught my jacket on the fence, he just pointed out that I could have gone under the fence instead. Damn, I hadn't noticed that.

Anyway, this is one of my bugbears about Spain. Every square inch of land belongs to someone and these someones seem to be allowed to build wherever they like (as long as the right "commissions" are paid to the right officials). As a result, there are fences all over the place. In fact, if I ever lose my job, I may set up a business in fence laying because it must be quite lucrative. It is a real challenge to go across country because you inevitably find your path blocked by some senseless fence - that is to say, a fence that doesn't really prevent anyone from entering a piece of land but only stops you going that particular way. When I think about the sort of trouble that gets kicked up when a famous pop star buys a country mansion in the UK and then tries to stop curious people traipsing through their grounds... What we need is an equivalent of the British Ramblers Association! Or perhaps a cross country version of the Critical Mass organizations.

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