Soller resembles Switzerland – occasionally…
The story of February 2012 is written in Soller folklore. It tells the tale of a date when the Soller Tunnel closed because it was simply too dangerous to get through and down the mountain by car. The City was marooned for a few hours because of the snow and everyone came out to play in the main square of Soller in front of the church. We thought those days would never come again but these past few days it has been touch and go. There was a day last week where there was a huge dump of snow at street level in Soller. Anyone looking out of their window at 5 am would have been overwhelmed by the sight. This was followed at 6.30 am by a bizarre thunderstorm which washed the snow away. No-one would have believed the amount of snow that had fallen at such a low level unless you, like me, were awake that early. The snow assembled very beautifully on the mountain tops and then the mist came and in and shrouded the lot. It wasn’t until 24 hours later when the mist lifted that we could see just how much more snow had accumulated on the full ridge of mountains surrounding Soller.
The snow brings out the boots and the suits normally used for ski trips to Andorra and then it is the trek up the mountains towards Fornalutx and beyond. Only problem was that the police and rescue services had two major rescues taking place and they didn’t want any more complications so they closed the roads. There were two separate groups stuck in the mountains when the heaviest of the snow was falling. One group in Sa Colobra and another near the reservoir in Cuber. Both groups were well prepared and had had warm clothing and food with them but they both needed air lifting out because of the deteriorating condition of the snow in the mountains. For the police and rescue services the idea that they had hundreds of trippers waiting to get their hands on that snow was just too much.
On Saturday the barriers were eventually pulled away and the families began pouring in to the Soller Valley . The Soller Tunnel did a brisk trade and over the weekend must have taken a fortune when everyone has to pay over 5€ to get in to Soller and the same to get out. The general plan for the visitors is to get as high up the mountains as you can and build that snowman ready to park it on top of your car and bring it back down the mountain as your badge of honour. The organised Sollerics took their barbeque provisions up to Sa Bassa to make sure there was plenty of refreshment on hand to warm up in-between snowball fights. The winter barbecues at Sa Bassa are legendary but this weekend there was almost a fight between those trying to park.
On Sunday after about 10.30 am there was no parking left in the car park and the cars began to snake back down the road to Fornalutx. The police took one look and shrugged – as if to say let them get on with it – which is exactly what happened. The ambition to get up and down the ‘snowy mountain’ was realised by many Sollerics and visitors. The few restaurants in the general vicinity did a roaring trade and everyone seemed very happy with their snow filled day. I watched from the warmth of Sa Teulera Restaurant as hundreds of cars came down the mountain with their bonnet snowmen. Some stopped off for lunch but most headed on back into Palma before their snowman illusion melted.
Soller is filling up this week with serious house purchasers. The local estate agents are in the middle of a bumper season with at least one agent reporting January 2015 as being their best month for sales – ever! This is from an agent who has been open in Soller for the past twenty years. Some of this success has been put at the door of our company – www.sollerweb.com and we were invited to discus the website statistics with the agent to analyse the phenomena. The figures made gratifying reading. From those that looked at the estate agent on Sollerweb to those who clicked through to the Estate Agents own website to those who went on to make appointments to view. The amount of information contained in the analytics is just mind-blowing and we were very happy to be acknowledged as part of the reason for this great start to their 2015.
Half term is round the corner and this is another peak house buying week in the Soller Valley . The children that accompany their parents on the viewings will have the summer and the pleasures of sea and sun in their heads. What a shock for them to arrive to the snow we can see everywhere today and the promise of more at higher levels to come. The Hidden Valley has seasons – even if they are short-lived – this gives this area even more appeal in my book. As long as you live in the moment and enjoy each little season as it comes you can’t go far wrong in this glorious place in the universe.