DANA - regular in September.


It was a strangely normal week in Mallorca inasmuch as it broke a series of Lord knows how many consecutive weeks when travel decisions by foreign governments have dominated proceedings. There was further normality in that it absolutely threw it down, there was another "avalanche" of migrants and the courts were having to weigh up Balearic government policies and actions.

Tipping it down

Mallorca was on the wrong end of DANA, not a one-time Eurovision Song Contest winner from Ireland but a meteorological phenomenon which occurs around this time every year. When it does, meteorologists attempt to explain this weather event to a general public that is none the wiser on account of not being meteorologists. What the public does know is that rains of biblical proportions are normal every September.

However, last week's DANA unleashed rather more rain than usual. Records were set, and the Aemet met agency suggested that some places are indeed experiencing greater rainfall because of the "cold drop" (as DANA is known). That'll be climate change, no doubt.

Attracting national tourists

The storms coincided with the change of the seasons, the Balearic government still hopeful that tourism can stagger on until roughly when the next change of season occurs. Iago Negueruela announced that 1.6 million euros will be going on co-marketing campaigns with Iberia and Vueling that are designed to entice national tourists to the islands.

The foreign market presumably won't be overlooked, as we learned how strong foreign tourism had been in the Balearics in the summer. A quarter of all air travel passengers arriving in Spain in August landed at an airport in the Balearics. All things were relative, though. The 1.29 million were some way short of the 2.35 million in August 2019.

The government back in court

The government, grateful of a belated gift from Madrid of 183 million euros worth of "insularity factor" funding for next year's budget, was once more having its time in court. Having regularly been visiting the high court for reasons such as curfews and bans on social gatherings, the government was now after retrospective approval for having made Spanish students isolate in the Covid hotel in June. The high court decided that a lower court had got this wrong and ruled that the government had acted correctly.

This prompted the Balearic Prosecutor's Office to take the high court's decision to the Supreme Court, leaving some to wonder why there has been such determination to prove that the government had actually wanted the students to stay in Mallorca. The government would have been more than happy to see the back of them, given all the trouble they cause.

Closing the vax centres

With some 190,000 non-community-spirited souls still stubbornly refusing to set foot inside a mass vaccination centre, the government closed two of the centres - Inca and Manacor. Not all the 190,000 are deniers, and so the vaccination continues at two centres for now - Germans Escalas and Son Dureta - as well as at health centres.

Covid testing numbers were meanwhile holding up well, boosted by the number of migrants who continue to flood into Mallorca. The opposition Partido Popular reckoned that the neglect of the Sánchez government, "in collusion with the Armengol government", had been a disgrace, 268 more migrants having arrived last weekend. The Sánchez government delegate in the Balearics, Aina Calvo, said that the government was working on getting the Algerian border reopened. It was closed because of Covid, which has complicated the repatriation of migrants.