The energy for the summer in the Soller Valley

By Shirley Roberts

Published in the Majorca Daily Bulletin
on Tuesday 4th July 2017

Photographs by Rachel Fox

At the end of this incredibly busy week in our world we are just taking a five-minute rest.  The Fiesta of San Pere has been keeping us going in the Port for four days and nights.  It finished with the fireworks at midnight on Sunday and the place is only now waking up from its recovery sleep.  Wherever you turned there was music, activities plus children and adults having a great time. The Yachtie celebs walked amongst us unrecognised until the local photographers got the scent and then Abby Clancy, Peter Crouch and mega famous singers were promptly recognised, snapped and left to get on with their fun.

The concert at the Torrent de Pareis was the place everyone wanted to be on Sunday afternoon.  This was the 54thyear for this very special occasion and Sollerweb were working overtime to make sure people understood what they had to do.  There is a lot of assumption on this island that people know where to go and what to do but this concert proves that not to be the case. The concert is free and the Capella Mallorquina Choir were in fine voice and greeted by thousands who had made the journey to the Gorge.  Driving the many hairpin bends to Sa Colobra is not a journey many want to take so the boat is king.  The boat companies will get you back to the Port of Soller for free but you have to let them know you are going to be part of the crowd so they can provide enough boats. In the end everyone who went had a great time and got back but there were many who wished they had known what to do and how to get there.  They really feel they missed out on a superb occasion.

There are some stories here that refuse to go away and the Soller transport system fares are one of them.  The word was out last week that new fares and deals for visitors and residents would be in force from 1st July. This is a story that gathered momentum at the the start of the year when the reduced rates for Balearic residents was challenged at the EU on the basis that it was discriminatory to the rest of Europe.

Once the rumours started I contacted the Mayor and the Ferrocarril to get the details for Sollerweb readers.  You would have thought I was asking for the password to paradise.  At 11.30 pm on Friday 30th June I was sent information that I was able to publish and on 1st July the government decree was also published.  All this secrecy and double bluff for a list of fares…
The sensible future includes winter month Sundays when the train and tram fares will be rock bottom prices for all.  Special discount book of tickets for a two week and a four-week duration to cover the holidaymakers tram tickets. Residents card which has to be purchased entitling users to the same discounts they currently enjoy. All these new procedures bring Soller into line with all other locations in Majorca which has a local train system. As we are the only location with a tram this bit is a mute point.  Discounted Tram tickets are now reasonably priced but for one off journeys or a family trip it is still eye wateringly expensive.
The questions continued to come in thick and fast because the information wasn’t enough to cover all the obscure ones.
‘What about me?’ is the heading for this list which includes discounts for pensioners? definition of a ‘resident’ and whether that included frequent visitors? plus many more questions.  I have sent them all to the Transport Minister but fear that I will have to present myself at the office of the Ferrocarril with my clipboard in evidence to collect the answers.

Meanwhile back in the real world of July in the Soller Valley the great life goes on.  This week we have the visit of the Mallorca Gay Men’s Choir to look forward to on Friday.  This takes place in the Museum of Modern Art’s Garden in Soller.

This building, known as Can Prunera is one of Soller’s palaces and the place that art lovers flock to.  For the concert in the the garden it is an altogether special experience.  We are all looking forward to the return visit of this choir that will set the scent for July 2017.  Do come and see us soon – you are very welcome.

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