summer holidays

The “real” Mallorca

The Real Mallorca.jpg

Someone was telling me about how glad they were to be living in the “real” Mallorca last week. The strange thing is that every different type of Mallorca is the real one. Wherever we live: whether it’s in a brand new housing estate, an old village, at the top of a mountain, a holiday resort or the middle of a city. It’s all there to be explored and enjoyed.

My husband and I did something really rare this week. We took some time off together and went on holiday. We don’t do normal holidays though, we do 24 hour long holidays, a bit like our honeymoon which was exactly that long. We drove up to the north of the island and managed to visit five different beaches, eat three spectacular meals, get sunburn and stay in a hotel, all whilst continually congratulating ourselves on our good taste in places to live and spouses.

It was an eye opening trip for both of us: we’d quite simply forgotten how beautiful Mallorca is. It’s easy to be absorbed in our working lives and stay in that zone: bumping backwards and forwards from work to home and repeat. So we went as far away from our house as we could without leaving the island, and went to Cala Torta, Cala Ratjada, Cala Gat, Cala Agulla, Playa de Muro and Cala San Vicente. Every single place was stunning and worthy of more than an our brief inspections. I couldn’t get over the colour of the sea at Playa de Muro, how is it possible for it to be so turquoise? We ate lunch at Ponderosa Beach which lived up to its reputation of being one of the coolest places to go this summer: the menu, the service and the setting were all just right. We didn’t leap off of any rocks at Cala Gat (pictured) but we watched some fearless kids throw themselves into the water a few times before we slipped off to have another dip followed by an Aperol Spritz and a Caña at the Chiringuito there. We stayed overnight at a cheapy cheap hotel in Cala Ratjada right on the front, costing us the grand total of 50€! We clambered across a packed out beach at Cala Agulla to find the nature reserve at the end of it, complete with nudists. Then when we’d almost finished we drove back down south through the stunning Tramuntana mountain range.

Sometimes luxuries are also necessities, and maybe we don’t put enough importance on resting from the crazy Mallorca summer workload. By the end of our 24 hour holiday my husband and I didn’t really want it to end, but we’re inspired to repeat it as soon as possible with more places around Mallorca. Why don’t you go somewhere you haven’t been to before? Well done to us all, we live on one of the most beautiful places in the world, but you already knew that didn’t you? If you want to suggest some areas for us to explore then please get in touch. http://www.facebook.com/mallorcamatters

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That time of year

from: http://blog.timesunion.com/payitforward/all-susan-stricklean/2003/

PLEASE SIGN THE PETITION HERE: CLICK HERE!

The summer holidays aren’t finished yet? Are you kidding me? There’s STILL another five weeks to go? WHAT? REALLY?

La Gidg, and I are struggling. We’re struggling with protracted (ridiculously protracted in my opinion, but you probably already figured that out) holidays, with the heat, with what she wants versus what I have to do, and with each other. Showdowns about tidying up her bedroom are happening on a daily basis, I fear that we may not get out of the vacations alive. It’s hard to explain to someone who doesn’t have kids of school age just exactly what a miserable thing it can be to have a child off school for three months whilst you are also trying to work for a living.

I have practiced and honed my argument about the length of the Mallorca summer holidays over many years now, so forgive me if you’ve heard this one before. We live on an island, the island’s main income comes from tourism which is at its peak during the summer months, most of the people who live on the island and have children at public schools on the island also work in the tourism industry or are in some way connected to the industry, which means that they are at their busiest in the middle of the summer, so why make the long school break coincide with this time? How can anyone enjoy this when they have to struggle with kids moaning and complaining about summer school (why don’t they ever seem to enjoy it?), you can’t work properly if your children are unhappy or not settled in their school. Why instead can’t we take a long break in December and January and February? You know what answer you get to this question? That it is too hot in the schools in the summer. I have two words: Air Conditioning. They have to heat the schools in the winter, why not just swap that attitude around?

Teachers and schools aren’t babysitters, and they’re probably the only ones who actually want to have three months off in the summer. But understand this, this the money that I pay for my daughter to attend summer school so that my husband and I can continue to work and earn money for our family and pay our taxes? Yeah, you guessed it; we can’t include it in our accounts and expenses. It’s almost as if the Spanish Government thinks that this is a luxury. It’s almost as if the Spanish Government thinks that the woman should stay at home and look after the children . . . ah, hang on a minute. . . Let’s start a revolution, I want to campaign for parents in business to be able to claim for their child care.

PLEASE SIGN THE PETITION HERE: CLICK HERE!

Summer’s Mission

We decided,  as a family,  that we weren’t spending enough time together or indeed enough time enjoying Mallorca.  So, this summer we are going to go somewhere new every week and report back on it.  First up is somewhere very easy to get to,  Cala Cap Falco beach. It’s around the back of Magaluf on the way to the casino.  Have you ever been there? 

Summertime Special

It has taken me several years to come to terms with the length of the school summer holidays and this year finally I think I am prepared. I’ve learnt from bitter previous summer experiences that too much of a good thing is, well, not a good thing. Too much of the same summer school equals stress, difficulty in mixing with new kids, more stress, expensive but only runs for two hours a day, stressful and pointless. We’ve been through all of these scenarios in our time.

So we have mixed and matched this year. First off is a trip back to the UK to visit her paternal grandparents for a two week jolly around North Wales in a caravan. (Yes, we packed wellies, and jumpers and a coat). This involved flying on her own as an accompanied minor on a British Airways flight (well, nothing but the best for my girl, thank you). Gidg has been so excited about the idea of flying on her own she has been informing even complete strangers of her trip for quite a while now. In fact you may have been told if you stood next to us long enough in the queue in the supermarket. Mummy on the other hand was a tad stressed about saying ta ta. I was okay up until the actual day of the flight and then I had a wobble. But she made it safe and sound and actually pronounced the whole experience a bit ‘boring’!

Following this she will be off to summer school at Kip McGrath in Palma for a couple of weeks to continue to improve her reading and writing in English, and then the local summer school for a couple more weeks and then, Hallelujah! We’re off for a family holiday to France, and I shall be fulfilling my promise to myself that I will not be working in August, come hook or crook. I’m already finding June a struggle this year: imagine what kind of condition I could be in by August. So I will try to keep my promise to myself. Then she’s going on a two week sailing course which will take us neatly out of August and into September, and Bob’s your mother’s brother, back to school. Yay!

The part I haven’t forgotten from the past that it is really easy to get stressed out in the summer with work and childcare colliding with each other. All too soon La Gidg will be grown and she won’t want to go to the beach or the water park with her old mum or dad, so this year I’m really going to try to find the balance and make summer time special.