Thursday, December 12, 2019

"Autonomous Regions of Spain"

Geography Now explains the “Autonomous Regions of Spain” (17 minutes).

There are a lot more of them than I realized.  The best known are the Basque area (Bilbao and San Sebastian-Donesta), and Catalonia (Barcelona).

I visited Bilbao in late April 2001 (it’s not on the main railroad but has its own, as well as bus, from San Sebastian), and saw the Guggenheim.

Basque is a bizarre language not of Indo-European origin.  Catalan is an amalgam of Spanish and French.

There are various political designations for the various regions, which might be thought of as like states in the US.  There is even a little piece of North Africa that belongs to Spain, as well as the Canary Islands.

Spain is less hospitable to free speech, having long had a mandatory link tax (part of the EU Copyright Directive).  Portugal next door is said to have very fragmented Internet access, which sometimes consists of packages of social media and cable channels, with no net neutrality.  But when I was in the hotel in Bilbao (which was both palatial and cheap) my own regular Internet access was good (from a large business center). There was also a marathon run that Sunday, and an extensive subway.  Bars were filled with people watching soccer games.  San Sebastian has an international film festival.

Wikipedia attribution of Guggenheim picture:

The museum appears in a Mission Impossible movie from the late 1990s/

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