I’m always curious when returning to a country that I visited as a child. Curious in the sense of wondering what elements of this new holiday, in a familiar place, will encourage sensations of nostalgia; and, curious of what new sites and experiences I will inhale.
I spent this family holiday in Port de Pollença, a beautiful little island situated on the Mediterranean. I stayed in a white washed villa with several apartments splitting the building up, with a striking blue pool, lazing below the front of balconies that face the sea.
The nostalgia kicked in upon arrival to Majorca; the heat and atmosphere were exactly as I recalled. The colours; the peaches, the pastels, and the whites decorating every house along the promenade. Houses adorned with deep sea green or blue shutters, with white or cream drapes and curtains flapping in the cool sea breeze. The sandy, dusty feeling everywhere, even in the suburbs. The smoggy visage of the mountains holding the bay and villas in its grasp whilst the sun sets behind them. It is exactly like I remember; like a painting, dripping with colours only seen created on a pallet; or like an F. Scott Fitzgerald novel, emitting several adjectives in one sentence so as to ensure you see exactly what his words want you to see.
I’ve spent the first two days mirroring every chilled out holiday; swimming, sun bathing, eating and drinking. Where the hardest decision to make was on whether we should go to the beach, or to the pool. What more could one ask for?
Well, my feet were itching for history, art and exploration. So, I woke up early and had a lovely morning walk with my mum along the promenade, and down a trail called the Pine Walk; an old cobbled walk with residential villas and apartments situated on one side, and the static ocean on the other. Old couples were dining and swimming amongst yachts whilst the water was silent. Locals were cycling to the markets on rickety, rusty old bicycles; laughing and joking with each other.
I also journeyed on to the markets in Pollença town and I was instantly enveloped in the smells, sights and sounds of the place. Towering around and above were crumbling dry stone buildings, with shutters which had peeling paint, and painted images of the Virgin Mary on the walls of the buildings; reminding us of the heritage and history of the area. As always with fresh produce, the colours were unimaginable; the tastes, too. The zesty tones of abnormally enormous, fresh fruit and vegetables; deep pink and red, salty cured meats; pastel and opaque, rich cheeses; all of which you were given tasters and being left wishing you had enough money to spend and feast like royalty on such palatable groceries.
If the food was anything to brag about, so was the home wear, clothes and accessories that other stalls had to offer you. Mediterranean coloured pottery and crockery; light, bohemian outfits; jewellery made from natural products such as paua shells, freshwater pearls and precious crystals all tied together with locally sourced twine. With the sound of classical guitars producing twangy and energising Spanish melodies, I ambled amongst the locals and tourists through winding streets and past both olive and hibiscus trees, happy in the discovery of fresh food and culture.
With everything from American grill houses to traditional Majorcan cuisine, we were spoilt for choice when choosing evening meals. I don’t think I have eaten as much seafood in a week as I have whilst being here. The seafood being both caught and cooked fresh, I couldn’t help but choose as many dishes as I could which had the local catches thrown into them. King Prawns, Langoustines, Salmon, Anchovies, Whitebait, Clams and Mussels; all being cooked in garlic and herbs. I think its safe to say that chewing gum is a necessity when eating here, unfortunately, my family learnt what it is like when you don’t have chewing gum and you reek as much as I have this past week.
I travel home today, back to the sad version of summer that England has to offer me. Thankfully, I have enjoyed having my body back in the sun and by the sea; devouring copious amounts of fruit and fish; and, chilling to such a degree that I am actually ready to be back worrying about money, study, and the other mundane worries and routines of every day life.