Published: October 31st 2011October 31st 2011
Tuesday, October 25
We spent the morning fretting about luggage weight! Fred and I had both been on the airline website, and we each had different maximum luggage weights for both checked and carry-on. As well, we each had different costs for overweight. Fred had a scale and we weighed and re-weighed our bags several times.
We had arranged for a large taxi to pick us up at noon, and we were at the airport by 12:30. And guess what? The airline agent allowed us to put an overweight bag through, and they didn't even ask about our two (each) carry-on bags! So we fretted for nothing.
The flight was very slick... one hour and forty-five minutes to Barcelona, half hour wait and forty-five minutes to Mallorca. We met "Max", our car rental agent, and we were loaded and gone in no time. By now it was dark, and the main roads were quite busy. Fred did a great job of navigating since the GPS didn't allow us to load in the address. We stopped at a grocery store for supplies including a wonderful bottle of Spanish wine (cost=3£!). After we unloaded the car, we spent a while on
the outdoor patio drinking the wine.
Wednesday, October 26
I was up a bit earlier than the others (surprised?) and did a short walk through town. The beach at the end of our road, called Cala Molins, was closed because of a massive build-up of eelgrass.
When I returned, we discovered that we had no coffee maker. So Fred made a very respectable "camp" coffee that we all enjoyed. We discovered a strange type of "scat" everywhere. At first we thought it was from rabbits or very small deer, but it turns out that it's from goats that run wild over the peninsula.
After breakfast we decided to drive the back road into Puerto Pollenca. However, we ran out of road, so Fred and Jill walked on while Maureen and I took the car around the long way and met them at the marina. There was a market in town so we strolled around checking things out. Back to the apartment for lunch, then we went to Cala Clara which is a beautiful beach next to ours--5 minutes further. There were a lot of people there considering it's the end of October and they were swimming in
the sea. Jill and Maureen had a long swim in the warmest water yet. Fred and I took lots of pictures. The air temperature was about mid-twenties or so, and sunny.
That evening we walked to the restaurant for dinner. Fred and I had roast suckling pig. Very tasty! We walked home using our flashlights to show the way.
Thursday, October 27
This morning we had a rather slow start. It was after 11:30 before we decided to take a day trip to Formentor Beach and out to the Cape Formentor lighthouse. We packed a bit of lunch, gassed up the car and headed through Puerto Polenca.
The highway was as twisty as the Croatian highway earlier described in these chronicles, but the biggest, and scariest, differences were the much greater amount of traffic and the (at times!) lack of guard rails. Every time we had to pass an oncoming car (often on a hairpin, blind corner!) we had to squeeze over to the edge where in many places the road edge had almost completely crumbled away! And there were absolutely no shoulders, which made the road very unforgiving. OMG! I was driving very slowly, but still
it was scary! On a few of the really narrow, tight spots, I stopped completely and let the other car squeeze by me because I felt I simply couldn't move any closer to the edge without going over.
Well, we made it to the lighthouse, then drove back! For some reason, it wasn't as bad on the return trip. We saw quite a few wild goats on the way. We stopped at the beach for a while. Maureen had a swim, we had some lunch and headed home for dinner.
Fred and I went to a bar for a little Wifi action while the girls did some laundry, and had tea. The bartender was friendly and spoke English well, so we chatted him up a bit. One of the things he told us was that there are 35,000 wild goats in the immediate area around Pollenca. Apparently, they are a great nuisance as they raid the garbage’s and also breed with the domestic goats, thereby diluting the genetic stock.
Fred and I made dinner... potato salad, chicken and green beans. Lovely! We spent the evening talking, and looking at our photos on the computer.
Fred and I were up by 7:30. Our clothes weren't dried yet so we decided to put on the portable heater and promptly blew a fuse. After turning off most of the lights, we were able to keep the heater going. The girls finally arose at 10:00.
After breakfast, we went to Alcudia to see the ancient Roman walls of the old city. These walls were a much different colour. They were reddish brown and seemed older, more crumbly. The beach area was quite nice, but the weather was cloudy so we didn't do any "beaching". We did do some shopping, then drove back for lunch.
We spent the afternoon chilling... writing, reading, napping. For dinner, we went to Port de Pollenca. There we walked the mallecon until almost dark. There were lots of restaurants open, although it didn't seem very busy. There were, however, quite a few Brits with their children. We wondered if there was a British holiday as there were so many families. Port de Pollenca is clearly a popular spot for Brits. We settled on a nice place that had a "special". This usually included several choices for the starter, the main meal
and the dessert (and sometimes a glass of wine!) for a set price. Our meals were great. We had fun watching all the family's kids play on the mallecon.
Saturday, October 29
We got going by 10:00 am today. We went wine touring in the Binissalem area. The first winery we visited was the largest in Mallorca. They bottle about 900,000 to one million bottles per year. It's called Jose L. Ferrer, named after the founder of the same name. Currently, his great-grandson, 22 years old, is working there. Quite the family operation. They have reds, whites, rose and sparkling wines. Unfortunately, (sorry Jason!) they don't ship wine outside of Europe because of the cost. Jill, Maureen and Fred had a good time! I was the DD!
Next we programmed the GPS for another winery in nearby Sencelles. When we got there, we were in the middle of the town! I got out to look around and finally found it. It's a small winery called Can Ramis. The owner was delighted to have us there. I guess he doesn't get many people touring because you can't really find it very well. He only had one kind of wine--red,
and it was delicious! So we bought 4 bottles.
Jill decided she wanted to buy some Mallorcan pearls. We tried hard to find the place, but even with the GPS we were unsuccessful. So we had lunch and drove back.
The girls wanted to stay and try out their new wine, while Fred and I went to the bar again to send off some emails and this blog!
Tomorrow, we drive back to Palma to board the Grandeur of the Seas for the crossing to Panama.
There are more photos below