The Institute of National Statistics (INE) will publish the national accountability figures for quarter 3, and, perhaps more interesting, the hotel results for November, as well as commerce for the same month. They will return to tourism though with the release of the figures that show the situation from 2010 until 2022.

Locally, it’s a big day for Torrevieja at Christmas. Not only because it’s the last Friday market before the big day, so you can go and get the freshest vegetables to accompany your overindulgence, but because Sanya Claus is officially coming to town, available for visits in his house, and then taking part in a grand parade in his honour on Saturday.

At noon today there will be children’s entertainment on calle Concepción and at 5:00 p.m., in the Plaza de la Constitución, there will be a magical Christmas letter workshop for Santa Claus. In La Mata, also starting at noon, there is a Children’s Crafts Workshop.

This evening, at 8:30 p.m., on the Plaza de la Constitución Stage, we will enjoy the spectacular voice of Lucía España.

There will also be events for the children taking place in Orihuela Costa starting at 5pm with the Santa Claus Parade, from c/ Nicolás de Busy to Cen. Zenia Boulevard Commercial  with the Reception in Zenia Boulevard at 5:00 p.m.

On the Playa Flamenca Esplanade there will be a Crafts workshop (12 years +) 5:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Every year on December 22, so Friday this year, at the Teatro Real in Madrid, the Spanish Christmas Lottery draw is held, commonly known as El Gordo. From 9:00 a.m., the drums begin to spin, and the children of San Ildefonso begin to sing the numbers and prizes that appear throughout the morning, until they end around 1:00 p.m. First prize, El Gordo, is 4 million euro, divided into 10 tickets worth 400,000 euro each, although from that prize each winner will have to pay 72,000 euro in tax.

El Gordo de la Primitiva
El Gordo de la Primitiva

The Guardia Civil, arrested or investigated 19 people and six legal entities belonging to an international criminal organisation dedicated to the illicit trafficking of dangerous waste of urban origin. The investigations began as a result of international collaboration, in the control of waste at the border, when an unusual transit of trucks loaded with urban waste from Europe destined for Spanish companies was detected. Rather than being correctly processed, the waste was dumped in a landfill in Zaragoza, with a false paper trail claiming it had been disposed of legally, netting the gang 16 million euro since 2020.

Normal, the Danish retail chain, continues to promote its expansion in Spain with the upcoming opening of stores in Madrid, Seville in January, and Valencia in February. In December, they already opened new stores in Almería, and the Dos Mares Shopping centre, which becomes Normal’s second store in Murcia. Since opening its first store in Spain in the La Gavia shopping centre in Madrid, Normal has added eight openings in just two months.

The Spanish real estate market reflected a cooling in activity in the third quarter of the year, at a time when high financing costs and persistent inflation mark the general economic future. Between the months of July and September, a total of 140,160 operations were registered, which represents an annual drop of 16.5 % and 7.8% compared to the previous quarter. The current economic context is also reflected in the number of mortgages on registered homes, a total of 90,858, which represents a decrease of the 2.9% compared to the previous quarter, the fifth consecutive quarterly decrease.

Suicides are the first cause of external death in Spain. According to the latest figures just published by the Institute of National Statistics (INE), covering the year 2022, 4,227 people took their own lives in Spain, which represents an increase of 5.6% compared to the previous year. Moreover, this figure represents the highest number of suicides since records began. If you need help or advice, the 024 telephone number is available 24 hours a day, and has a translation service. This service, in its first month, identified nearly 15,000 calls and referred more than 650 to emergency services.

Making the news headlines in 1974, terrorists bomb the home of the Conservative leader and former Prime Minister Edward Heath.

In 2023, we had the Covid inquiry, but on this day in 1997 it was announced that an independent inquiry would be held to look into the BSE “disaster” and the devastation it wreaked on British farming.

On this day in 2014, Sheffield-born singer Joe Cocker died of lung cancer in Crawford, Colorado aged 70.

Sticking with music and if we go back to this day in 1984, Madonna scored her first American number 1 with “Like A Virgin”, a song produced by Nile Rogers, or Chic fame. The song held the top spot for six weeks.

The same day was also important at the time to Madonna in the year 2000, as on this day she married British film maker Guy Ritchie.

And finally, for our famous birthday of the day, although I have to give an honorary mention to Ricky Ross from Deacon Blue, born on this day in 1957, we are instead going to France. Slightly concerning because she’s almost as old as me, but legendary young lady singer, Vanessa Paradis, famous for the 1988 UK No.3 single, ‘Joe Le Taxi’, was born on this day in 1972.