The Friday before Christmas Day in Soller and it’s as if we are already celebrating. So wonderful to have old friends back in town ready to catch up. New restaurant openings are pleasing those who thought they would find few places to party. The new kids on the block knew what they were doing by opening in December when their competitors were sleeping. This week it’s been book launches, Christmas lunches and Gallery openings plus tales of ambitious new plans. If you came to Soller right now you would see a building site in the middle of Town with the largest cranes ever seen. The word is out about the Soller Valley, and we are on the map.

Before we get busy again, we just want to have a great Christmas. Families have braved train strikes, snow and inclement weather to get here and that’s without the misery which is the airport these days. So now they are here, and the travels are behind them. Time to relax into a Soller Christmas with all it brings.

Sollerweb achieved its Food Bank collection target. We raised 2300 euros on a GoFundMe project for the Soller Food Bank. The money has now found its way to the bank account of the Caritas initiative and will be used this season for local people. We are always proud of our friends, who, despite their own hardships, find the cash to help.

Our newest friends don’t realise yet the inequality on this beautiful island. So many with so much and so many with so little. Once people understand they are generous with their money and time and there are great examples of this all over this island.

All our ducklings are home for Christmas. London City life and University Halls in middle England are wonderful adventures but when it comes to Christmas this is where their hearts are. The stories of the airports say that people are leaving the UK on masse to be somewhere else for this season. Last one left turns the light out please…

Airports and travel bring their germs with them and so many have been afflicted by sore throats and temperatures. Always good to be able to recover at home but such a shame if the first week of the holiday is in the illness twilight zone. We live in the Vitamin C Valley, so we have no excuse but to turn to the natural remedies. Honey and lemon and gallons of orange juice is the order of the day.

The rumble is gathering about Christmas presents for 2024. I heard this story once and then it seemed to be on repeat. Are you aware that 2024 is the year of the Paris Olympics? The Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games will be the biggest event ever organised in France. The Olympic games will take place from 26 July to 11 August 2024. The spectacle taking place during those weeks is destined to go down in history and Paris will be the centre of the world – the world of sport and so much more.

This is bang in the middle of the peak holiday season for the Mediterranean. A bit worrying that all eyes are turned towards France and combining family holidays with the sports people want to watch. France is so accessible from the UK and the rest of Europe. It is tickets for the Olympics which are being bought like hot cakes as Christmas presents. They have just opened a website to register interest and request tickets for events.

All about Sport and we are still in recovery from the football win. Many Argentinians live in the Soller Valley and were extremely happy at last Sunday’s results. Now its football back in its box as the world starts the focus on an Olympic Games in Paris.

Christmas for me is being home in Soller with my family. Old traditions and new board games and a gentle swing into eating, drinking and laughing for the season. My wish for all is that Christmas brings recharging of those tired batteries. Time for gentleness and joy and being kind to one another.

Happy Christmas friends, from all of us in the Soller Valley!