Beauty all around us in the Soller Valley
By Shirley Roberts
Published in the Majorca Daily Bulletin
on Tuesday 13th June 2017
Photographs by Rachel Fox
The new moon has been spectacular these past few nights. The vision of the moon reaching the top of the ridge of the mountains and then climbing higher to give us the full glory is very special. It always amazes me just how much you can see by the light of the moon and not much else. There are people in the Soller Valley who would like to ban all light pollution and exist by what light the moon and stars give us. There is also a movement going on to bring Skyglow concerts here where the moon is the light and the music sets the scene in the mountains for a concert to welcome the sunrise. All very beautiful and calming so they tell me.
On Saturday the public outdoor pool of Soller opened for 2017 with a free entry afternoon. As a municipal facility this is second to none as it sits in the bowl of the Tramuntana mountains. It has got to be one of the most beautifully situated pools in the world and Sollerics just love it.
The season is very short – just from June to the end of August and it very well used. It shares the site with the Tennis Club of Soller where many a famous tennis player learnt their craft. Rafa still comes over occasionally to see his Soller friends leaving his own state of the art courts in Manacor.
The Football Club of Soller is another very well used facility and the Soccer Mums and Dads of Soller are a committed bunch of people. The Soller Football Club is 94 years old this year – its birthday is on August 24th. The stadium was built in the centre of the City about 5 minutes walk from the square. Of course when it was built it was on the outskirts of the City but these days the urban sprawl has caught up with it and placed it bang in the centre. It has to be the most beautiful football pitch in the world with spectacular mountain scenery all around. It is a very well used club and has its own café within the grounds to feed the never ending supply of the Soller population who use the pitch and facilities.
It is home to the Soller Football Team who are looking forward to better days in the league. It is also a very significant location for hundreds of young people who use the space every week. The reason I know so much about this place is because Mimi, my thirteen year old granddaughter just loves to play football. She joined the soccer school when she was small and still and turns up twice a week for training with additional commitment at weekends to play home and away games.
This is the sort of club that has hundreds of bikes left propped up against the wall. The children get on their bike and cycle to the pitch, play football and then cycle home again. The exercise regime for these children is first class and they are very enthusiastic. The children’s soccer life is very well organised with the early training programmes leading to a place with the team which is affiliated to the Spanish Federation of Junior Football.
The ‘Federation’ is much revered and it is the players ambition to be spotted by one of the Federation’s coaches and offered a place on the Team. This is certainly the children’s desire and of course the ‘Soccer Moms’ will support their children. This is not without cost to them and the day their child gets a place on the team is the day their life changes. Then it is supporting them in home games, driving them all over the Island for the away games, washing the kit, preparing food for the social events and paying the subscriptions. They get to know Majorca’s football pitches very well including the smallest villages who are so proud of their facilities.
Back in Soller the matches are well supported by local families and as we sit on those stone steps with the beauty of the majestic scenery all around us we have to pinch ourselves.
Ordinary life goes on day to day in the Soller Valley and the same problems beset us as anywhere else. We still have to get up in the morning and deal with stuff. We are just so lucky to do it all in such a beautiful place.