June glooms and pleasures in the Soller Valley
By Shirley Roberts
Published in the Majorca Daily Bulletin
on Tuesday 6th June 2017
Photographs by Rachel Fox
June’s glooms are being felt by the Town Council of Soller as they are under siege on the subject of rubbish. Their state of the art rubbish machine has broken down and they have seven of their refuse collectors off sick. This is at a time when the area is full of tourists and other visitors and the Hotel Association is on their case. The beachfront hotels send their own staff to clean up and community minded individuals do their bit but all is not well in the Town Hall on this issue.
The other gloom to occupy the Mayor is the parking story. The Town Hall are in talks with local people who own large pieces of land which could be used as temporary or permanent car parks. This is a pressing issue as right now visitors are finding it hard to park. In September when the changes happen to the Soller tunnel more visitors will arrive and more car parking will be needed. There is a long term plan to build more car parks but that all takes time and money and in the meantime a solution has to be found. The landowners are not negotiating at present and according to the Town Hall want far more than they can afford to pay for this. This will run on until a compromise is reached and we all hope that is soon.
On a lighter note June is a month of wall to wall fiestas and is many Sollerics favourite month. This year a big party takes place on Saturday 10thJune when Fairline are celebrating their 50th anniversary and bringing 50 yachts and people in to have a party in the Marina. This promises to be a very big, prestigious night in the Port.
June is traditionally the holiday month for the workers who can take holidays in the middle of the season. Those with year round jobs often take a break as the children break up around the 20th of the month. The Summer Schools that do a great job with child care don’t start till July so there is a two-week period in June when there are as many local children on the beach as visitors.
This is also the time when a bit of island hopping takes place and the teenagers from this one take the boat and head for Minorca for the famous San Juan Fiesta. The music and the equestrian displays are legendary and it is part of the right of passage for the youth to change islands when they can.
Deia’s patron saint is San Juan and this gives rise to a ten-day list of great events there. From music to exhibitions to party nights the focus is there. Many part time residents of Deia return for their fiesta and host amazing parties. So if you are in the know you can be partied out by the end of the week and need those sunbathing, sleeping days on the beach to recover.
The fiesta that everyone loves in these parts is the purification picnics of the night of San Juan which this year is on Friday 23rdJune. St John was the saint that baptised Jesus and for that reason the water side locations claim him as their own. At midnight of the Eve of St John people take a swim or a paddle in the sea to symbolize purification and cleansing. It is said that your ailments will disappear and that your sins will be forgiven if you perform this ritual. Dressing in white and joining with many others doing the same thing is also very important.
The beachside picnics and barbeques are legendary and the authorities seem to turn a blind eye to the bonfires on the beaches for this one night in the calendar. Candles with their direct flame to heaven are used on the beaches too and sent out on little floats to sea taking with them the prayers of the faithful. Writing your prayer on a piece of paper which is thrown into the flame is also said to bring you luck. The swim at midnight can be just a paddle if you prefer but you have to enter the water!
The month ends with St Peter having a week long celebration with loud music in the Port of Soller. A separate programme for this has yet to be published so I will update you on that one next week. The best I can say is that we love a party in the Soller Valley and you are so welcome to join us.