This post was originally written on Monday 17th October, in mid-air.
Homeward bound (Cries internally)
I felt like it was going to take me being dragged, kicking and screaming, through the airport in order to get me on that plane. Boy I was not ready to go back home.
It’s not because the attractive Majorcan weather is going to make the sudden temperature drop back in England hurt that little bit more. It’s not just the fact that I will have to once again start cooking my own meals, the buttery bland toast pailing in comparison to the all you can eat breakfast, the beach and club sandwiches laughing at my pathetic attempts at cheese on toast, and with all future evening meals being unworthy to share the same stomach space where the great Paella once roamed. It’s not even the dread of having to trade dragging my arse out of bed for the office, as opposed to a sun kissed beach. No, the real reason I am beyond devastated to be leaving Majorca and flying back to the UK, is because I have fallen in love with this wonderful island.
Holiday romances are tricky, no matter how much you have fallen for one another, no matter how passionate and exciting the fling may be, it is just that: a fling. Sooner or later, you find yourself back on that plane home, pining for your holiday romance that has begun to slowly fade away into nothing more but a memory… Though I hardly imagine my feelings are being reciprocated by an island (Pull yourself together). I doubt Majorca will be raining itself to sleep, pining for me, wishing that I will come back into its warm embrace…
The point is I have fallen in love with Majorca. My week long stay has presented me with opportunities to explore a foreign land, take in the beautiful sights, admire the scenery, immerse myself in new ways of living, and to breath in the atmosphere and relax in this paradise of peace. Of course, a lot of my love for the island comes from its inhabitants. The people are what make the island what it is. Majorca is primarily devoted to the tourist trade. From the moment we touched down, throughout the week, we were met with natives that, not only are able to speak perfect English, but are on hand to offer support and advice to us hapless and confused British tourists, all with a smile and a genuine sense of pride and enjoyment in the work that they do.
The staff at the Hotel Rocarmarina were the epitome of this. Despite the 200 plus rooms on site, the staff all know you, they are friendly to you. Every morning, you are greeted to a chorus of cheerful “Good morning’s” and “Ola’s,” immediately elevating the quality of your day. On our final breakfast this morning, the head waiter (who I have witnessed all week working with the efficiency of 20 men), came to personally bid his farewell to us and wish us a safe travel home. The maids in the hotel (by far the friendliest, and happiest in their working environment, group of women I have ever seen) also found the time to wish us a cheerful “Adios” before we left. It may not seem like much, but it’s little niceties such as this, along with the evident hard work from all hotel staff, that made our stay memorable and turned this 4 star resort, into a 5 star experience.
Of course, the good nature of Majorcans extends far beyond the reaches of our hotel. I mentioned in my last post about the excursions we were lucky enough to attend, to the West and Northern reaches of the island. No matter how far out we travelled, we could be sure that the natives of the island would be accommodating, supportive and a true delight to share company with. There is always a small fear in me when travelling outside of the comforts of my home land, that I would stick out like a sore thumb and feel lost, like a small fish in an ocean. Yet, the people of Majorca, were so kind, so accommodating and friendly that I never felt like a stranger, I felt like I belonged.
Which brings me to this, a message to the British people who have, or are planning on visiting this wonderful place.
Make. An. Effort!
I have seen Majorcans go above and beyond to make our lives that little bit more easy, relaxing, and enjoyable on their island. Most of them have taken the effort to learn a second langauge, some even a third, to accommodate us tourists. They put in so much to deliver a truly outstanding level of customer service. So it pains me to see that so many British tourists just don’t bother to learn, or een attempt to speak back to them in their own language. Granted I’m not expecting miracles, neither are they, no one is going to be fluent in multiple languages at the drop of a hat. But come on guys, it takes minimal effort to throw a simple “ola” or “gracious,” or even a “por va vor,” in these people’s directions. I know it can be daunting to attempt to speak in every other tongue that is not Her Majesty’s English, but it’s really nothing compared to how hard the locals work for us. Plus a little Spanish goes a long way, not only can you attempt to immerse yourself in another culture, and maybe learn something along the way, but the locals do appreciate you trying to speak their language, even if you make mistakes (which I did constantly), as a waiter said to me “It’s better than nothing.” Plus, they will be happy to correct and broaden your knowledge some more in return for trying, I now find myself leaving the island with a greater knowledge and understanding of the language, the culture, and a true love for the island the people lucky enough to inhabit it.
I am lucky to have experienced this island for the first time, and anyone who comes to Majorca is just as lucky as I am. So please, do not take it for granted.
I write to you from the plane back to the UK, with the island now miles behind me, as opposed to the preference of being ahead. However, I have forgone the sadness and am now happy and content in leaving, because one day I shall return.
Adios Mallorca. Muchos Gracias
On another note, there are another group of people that need thanking. The people from Thomson/TUI, whom we organised this holiday with. They provided the flights, coach transfer, hotel, and the additional excursions and shows we were able to attend. They played cupid for me and Majroca, and for that I truly thank them. I would strongly recommend booking a holiday with these guys in the future, if you are looking for a holiday that you will never forget (other travel agencies are available).
*Takes one step off of the plane, only to be immediately hit by the cold English wind*
“EUUUGH MY GOD THIS IS HORRIBLE!!!!!!“
*JUMPS BACK ON PLANE*