What We Did on Our Holidays – Part 5 by 67 and Stopped Counting
Cry FREEDOM! Well not quite, but restrictions have been lifted a bit here on the holiday island of Mallorca. The Spanish government has decided to enter into Phase Zero of their return to the New Normal plan.
That meant that people could leave the house in groups of two as long as you lived together, or four if it was one parent and up to three children – but not two parents and two children, and only in your allocated time slot determined by your age. Our time slots were 6am until 10am and 8pm until 11pm.
The furthest I had been outside our four walls up to this point was the 297 steps to the recycle bins and 297 steps back.
We were so excited! Day One, Saturday, we got up early, skipped breakfast and ran down to the sea front. Which way to go? Left would take us towards the famous hotel where Agatha Christie wrote The Problem at Pollensa Bay and right would take us towards the marina. We went right. It was grand.
Down the front, along the “Moll”, round behind the restaurant, looked at the yachts, back down the “Moll” to the roundabout, up the main street, across to the square, past the church and the taxi rank and turned right towards home. It was very quiet with only a few people to dodge as the 2 metre social distance rule had to be observed. We were over the moon, and I rubbed a blister.
Sunday – we turned left at the bottom of the street towards the hotel. This is a lovely and very popular walk – very popular… After being overwhelmed by other walkers, panting joggers and cyclists we decided that social distancing was proving too tricky and we turned away from the sea in towards the villas.
We came across a little wood that had paths running through it and vowed to explore it later suitably coated in Goibi, the insect repellent of choice.
Monday we went to the supermarket – not together because food shopping together is still not allowed. DH went first with the wheelie trolley and I followed on about 20 minutes later via the recycle and lurked about outside until I saw him at the till.
I foolishly tried to enter the shop without disinfecting my hands first with their hand gel (I had used my own outside) and was directed to do so, quite firmly. Chastened, I helped DH with the bags and we walked home together, me having not actually shopped and thus obeying the rules.
Tuesday we walked through the streets of the town, rather than the sea side areas, where we stumbled across a little hardware store. One frustrating thing about this holiday/lockdown combo is that we were going to varnish the balcony doors and re-paint the apartment walls. Unfortunately we didn’t buy the paint etc before the lockdown and then we had to give the car back, so travelling to find DIY stuff was not really an option.
So spying the shop, we popped in – both of us, because we weren’t shopping for food.
I said to the old gent behind the counter “Tienes barniz?” (Do you have varnish?) He said “Como?” (“What?”). I repeated “Tienes barniz?” He just looked confused. So DH steps up and says “Tienes barniz?” The old boy trots off with a beckoning hand taking DH to the varnish.
Even in these times of crisis it’s good to see that casual sexism hasn’t dropped off the agenda.
67 and Stopped Counting is a Canadian girl transplanted into Yorkshire, England and loving her retired life with her husband. She has many pastimes including reading, lampwork, jewellery making, pottery and her big love, golf. She enjoys spending time in their Mallorcan hideaway and living the good life. The Spanish call retirement ‘jubilado’ – and I’m sure she will be very ‘jubilado’ when they are able to come home.
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