To begin with, we have had really lovely weather. What a change after four dreary months of wind and rain.
Naturally, every spring flower that has been struggling to catch one's eye now can with a vengeance. It all looks wonderful and everybody is sneezing as a result. With nature you can always find something to grumble about. There will be masses of hay, and at present the sheep are distinctly overfed. On Monday morning, in solemn procession, the Virgin Mary was taken up to the Oratory of Santa Lucia above the village. The sun shone and the paella competition that followed happily filled many tummies. Some cloud came over in the afternoon but it did not dampen the spirits of the Majorcan dancers. The public took part, and it was a really happy day. But, that was only the start of a hectic week. On Tuesday, the group that gathers from many corners of the island to do Scottish dancing in Moscari, nearly did not. Fiestas in various villages made traffic chaotic and we started very late. In fact, of course there is an awful lot of dancing going on. The International Dance Festival in Palma spreads itself around and our market town of Inca gets visitations. What a riot of colour in the sunshine and when you see the dancers from the Landes in France dancing amazingly on stilts, the fact that the Circo Americano has tried hard to attract every rural child into Inca, seems to be unfair competition. Of course, Mancor del Valle is not backward in activity. An art exhibition in what was the old silent cinema vies for attention with the efforts of politicians for the forthcoming elections. But, to crown it all, Friday saw the arrival of some of the largest lorries anybody had ever seen. Suddenly, every available space is being filled with tents. One giant eight-wheeler has almost occupied the whole restaurant car park as it has transformed itself into a large cafeteria emblazoned with Trials and a list of motor cycle riders headed up by Tony Lambkin. The noise was beginning to mount, there are trial motorbikes everywhere, and today will be the big day. The yoga group are having to be bussed into the distance as yoga and bike noise don't mix. It's the 'Spanish National Trials Championship'. The population of Mancor del Valle is under one thousand. An event of this magnitude is rather swamping. The son of the late owner of the restaurant is already nearly worn out, as he was a dab hand at the motorbike game before he took over, and there is an impressive array of his trophies. Naturally, he has never been so busy. What one fears is that the tranquility of rural life may vanish forever. Every child in the village will be pestering their parents to buy trial motorbikes (under age, unlicensed will be disregarded) and every hillside for years to come will be spluttering with novices practising the art. But, such is rural life, how hectic can it get? A few days ago the dogs were barking their heads off. They seem to have been stunned into silence. Well, to begin with Mancor del Valle hardly knows what a policeman looks like. How come we are swarming with them!
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