LADY Luck helped write a real Christmas tale in Majorca yesterday.
Not only was 20 million euros won on the El Gordo (The Fat One) Christmas lottery, but 72-year-old Angel Mendoza, given just a few weeks left to live by doctors, scooped a 2.2 million euro jackpot at Muro General Hospital and shared it out with his family.
The winning number of yesterday's El Gordo draw was 54.600 with each ticket broken down into tenths (decimos) and sold all over the country.
However, apart from the main jackpot landing in the Catalan town of Sort (Luck), Majorca, and to a lesser extent Ibiza and Minorca, all enjoyed a share of the jackpot.
Half of Majorca's winnings landed in Muro where the best part of 10 million euros was shared out amongst the lucky locals who bought one or more of the 50 tenths, worth 200'000 euros each, sold by María Boyeras, owner of the bar in the local sports centre.
Her son had bought the tickets over the internet and María said yesterday that she thought they had only bought 27, not 50, but now we've won, the more the merrier. She also admitted that when the tickets arrived, neither she nor many of her customers liked the number but now, every time I look at the number, I like it even more. Especially so, as she held on to three tenths.
But one local girl who had bought 17 decimos was literally dancing on the tables yesterday.
No sooner had those in the bar watching the draw on TV realised they had won, the party started and was still going on yesterday evening.
Across town at the Muro general Hospital, there were also celebrations for 72-year-old Angel Mendoza. Only last week did doctors tell his family that he had just a few weeks to live, but it was enough time for him to buy 11 tenths and pick up 2.2 million euros.
Tears of joy, along with plenty of cava, also flowed in Santa Ponsa and Palma yesterday.
The Association of Majorcan Small and Medium Sized Businesses (PIMEM) this year bought 5'400 1 euro 60 shares in the number 17.275 from a lottery office in Santa Ponsa, for its members.
The number won fourth prize of 8.7 million euros yesterday and some of the winning tickets had been passed on by traders to their favourite clients and friends. So small winnings were picked up all over Majorca as well as in Minorca.
Needless to say, at the PIMEM headquarters in Palma, little work but plenty of celebrating was being done yesterday as well as at the lottery outlet in Santa Ponsa.
However, outlet owner José Ruiz said that while he had sold six other strips of the same number, he sent four back as very few people liked the number.
And 900'000 euros was shared out in Ibiza Town and San Antonio.
All eyes, and hopes, are now on the New Year, El Niño, lottery draw.
Back in Muro at the El Gordo winning bar, they have also bought tickets for the El Niño draw over the internet from yesterday's winning outlet in Sort - but one thing is a sure bet, there are probably very few, if any, left by now.