My Delusional Island

The rains came. They fell with such force that there must have been a bit of frantic pairing off in the animal world. Ravines were filled to the brim with raging torrents that swept away everything in their wake. Streets became rivers and cars turned into reluctant boats.

But not where we live in the north. Thankfully here it was just a rainy day.

The worst affected places were in the north east and the south west of the island, where monsoon deluge caused devastation. Both north and south escaped rather lightly.

In the Spanish speaking world it was quite clear what happened and where.

Not so in the English speaking one. In the English speaking world the R word cannot be mentioned in connection with the south, except in a breezy ‘oh yes we had rain, three spots fell’ sort of way. It’s always three spots.

There, rain is seen as a virus.

Subsequently on Monday I woke to learn that the area affected worst by the rain was the north. No specific part, just the place that is the north. No mention at all of the devastation in the south west. On social media the comments were mostly the same. ‘worst hit was the north’ ‘the north’ ‘the north’. All from people who don’t actually live in ‘the north’.

The first rule of expat shite club is that when it comes to weather, it is always worse in the north.

The worst example of this was one person who actually conceded that a town in the south west was badly affected, except he then placed it geographically as being in… the north.

The weather is always worse in the north even when it isn’t.

Today there is another weather alert for rain. The official Met Office advice is that it will fall throughout the day in the north, 60mm over 12 hours.
In the south, east and west it will be 15mm an hour between 1pm and 11pm with the heaviest rainfall forecast for the south east.

Spanish websites reflect this. But once again English reports have interpreted it differently.

As always, despite the Met Office advice and the maths regarding predicted rainfall figures, the word on the English speaking web is ‘the heaviest rain will be in the north’.

Of course it will.

I used to wonder why so many English speaking people on this island got their information so wrong.

The answer is simple.

The most accurate sources are in Spanish. A seriously high percentage of English speaking expat residents can’t speak or read Spanish. Subsequently they get their information from a limited number of sources – never from the original source in Spanish. It is second, third or a lot of hands down the line. If the first source gets it wrong everyone gets it wrong.

And anyway, the weather is always worse in the north.


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