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thinkSPAIN

  1. YOU'VE read about Spain's record rainfall, wind speed, wave height, coldest and hottest temperatures (if you haven't, check out the fascinating set of numbers here – and keep a note of them as conversation-starters for later), but what is a 'normal' winter like in the westernmost Mediterranean country, and how much does it differ depending upon where you are?
  2. SPAIN'S tourism industry representatives are calling for the Covid vaccine roll-out to be accelerated as much as possible to avoid another 'lost year' for one of the country's biggest sources of employment and income. 
  3. UNIQUE sights are among Barcelona's major pulls – the wonderfully-wacky Sagrada Família cathedral, the psychedelic Parc Güell, the Batlló House and the weird Royal Ramblas Hotel, which feels as though your retinae are melting when you see it – but all of these put together would not make passers-by stop in their tracks like the latest oddity spotted in a city-centre street.
  4. TEAM Ferrari has confirmed when Carlos Sainz Junior's first day at work will be as Spanish Formula 1 fans get set to watch the son of a four-wheeled legend shift his career up a gear.
  5. PROBABLY the most world-famous Spanish music artist of the moment, Rosalía, has teamed up with another new-ish global sensation in a duet that fans of either or both had been secretly dreaming about.
  6. A PLANNED rise in self-employed persons' Social Security, or national insurance payments has been shelved until May instead of coming into force in January 2021, and the scope has been widened for those whose income is affected by the pandemic to claim. 
  7. CARE home residents and staff and front-line healthcare workers have nearly all had their first dose of the Pfizer vaccine against Covid-19, and many are already starting to receive their second jabs – after which, the next group will be the over-80s not living in nursing accommodation.