June is a funny old month as it brings in the summer and hot weather. At the same time the mornings are often cold and you need to take a cardigan with you if you leave the house early. Then by lunchtime the roasting starts and you feel overdressed. Thus it has ever been and June has that reputation. California and Spain have a ‘June Glooms’ title for the early days of the month.
The June gloom arrived in Soller last Friday night in the guise of the police looking for the loudest party in the world. A group of people had an enthusiastic night on the borders of Biniaraix and the town didn’t know what hit it. The lockdown world has been very quiet except for the 8 pm claps which sometimes brought out the pots and pans and sound systems. I don’t know how many were at this party or whether it was a small group making a lot of noise but the police were not happy. Friday saw Soller and Calvia in the headlines for having a noisy night. It must be a slow news day as the TV cameras were in Soller on Saturday morning tracking down this ‘ground breaking’ story.
The Puerto Soller is being tidied up ready for the installation of the beach furniture. The earth moving machines hit the Repic beach and the sand was shifted good and proper. Only trouble was the next day the wind and rain arrived and the sand just did what it wanted to and didn’t stay tidy. I think the machines will be back with us next week.
This phase of life is watching everyone get browner and browner as they spend time in the sun or in the sea. Locals have never had so much Vitamin E or time spent at the beach in June. Everyone has their ‘to do’ list of places they would like to go before work starts again. Family and resorts to visit all over the island and then further afield from Monday. A trip to Ibiza or Minorca is now possible and plans are being made.
There is just one big problem in all this and that is actual cash. The stories abound of people who expected to get cash under one of the government support schemes and haven’t received any money yet. It is said that this is all down to the sheer numbers of applications but that doesn’t help if no cash has come your way for ten weeks.
I decided I needed to have a look at the shops in Festival Park this week. I found a few things I wanted to try on and joined the queue for the changing rooms. After 15 minutes I gave up and put everything back on the clothes racks. I understand and respect the rules but life is just too short to disinfect three times and join that queue. The drive via Bunyola to the shopping centre was worth the effort. Majorca is just looking so beautiful and calming. Empty roads, loud music and I was happy.
70% of the restaurants and cafes of Soller and the Port are now open. Locals use them if their finances permit, birthdays are celebrated and life goes on. Talking to the restaurant owners they tell me that it is all difficult to predict. Their days are spent serving drinks and then they get an occasional group to eat. No previous experience of this situation to enable them to make plans. Overstaffed and a tendency to boredom is how one owner put it. There is only so much disinfecting of empty tables to be done. Menus online with the Apps customers can use have their drawbacks. The decision, one slow night, to offer special rates to encourage customers needs a website guru to sort. Spontaneity is not what apps are all about.
The community of Soller is pretty small these days and very local. When a local man went missing people joined the search and helped the family. This story does not have a happy ending I’m afraid, but the solidarity of the people was outstanding.
June glooms will give way to the San Juan celebrations where the past is washed off our feet. The beach becomes a sanctuary of candles as the purification happens. Gloom gives way to renewal and that sets the scene for the summer for us all.