At the age of 63, as many of us are looking forward to retirement, Mariano Rajoy, who until 3 weeks ago was one of the most powerful men in Europe, has gone back to his former job as the Land Registrar in Santa Pola.
Rajoy was ousted as Prime Minister following a historic vote of no confidence in the Spanish Congress. He subsequently arrived in Santa Pola last Wednesday telling members of the press corps “I have retired from politics and I am back where I used to be. Life goes on.”
It is understood that Rajoy will live in the area during the week but he will return to Madrid at weekends.
At the age of 24, prior to launching into politics, Rajoy was the youngest registrar in the country but last Friday, June 15, he tendered his resignation as a deputy in the Lower House and announced that he would request re-entry into the Association of Property Registrars, and seek to return to his former position in Santa Pola.
“I come to Santa Pola to stay”, he told his friend, Francisco Gaspar Riquelme, who has occupied the position of Registrar temporarily, for the last 28 years, and with whom he went to eat at a local restaurant in order discuss both his handover and the operation of the Registry.
After then meeting the seven staff who will be working with him on the Registry Office Rajoy retired to the privacy of a back office where he continued his discussions with Riquelme.
His friend told the press that, “as of today (Wednesday) Mr Rajoy is the new occupier of the position,” adding that he had taken possession of the post in accordance with the law.
“He has always been a very normal person,” he said, describing his discussions with the former leader during the early hours of yesterday afternoon.
Following journalists questions about the future leadership of the Partido Popular, of which Rajoy is still the head, he said “I do not talk about politics with friends”.
Completely oblivious to any political intrigue, corruption scandals, or other affairs of state, Rajoy left his office at around 2.15pm, and told the press that “I’ve had time to do lots of things.” Half-a-dozen bodyguards protected him as he left for Alicante to catch a high-speed AVE train headed for Madrid.
He said that he would be back in Santa Pola next week when he would take over his new post on a permanent basis.
At that point he will return to his former life as a civil servant when his days will again focus on issuing documents which relate solely to property ownership, inheritance queries and so forth, in a nine-to-five job that represents bureaucracy in its purest form.