by David Whitney

I am sure that nobody on this island was unaware that March 1st is a day to remember and celebrate. It was of course, Balearic Day and Palma was the place to be on this sunny and warm day. I was there and travelled by train from Sineu. I was not alone as the train was packed, seats taken and standing room only. The 1.5 metre distance, was but a mere memory as all train travel was free and I am sure that the majority visiting Palma used the train!!!!! Why drive and try to park?? Sadly, I heard that bus travel was not free. Why not, one may ask??

If you have not been to Palma on this special day then you must wait for another year to pass. Events do start from the 26th February but the day to be in Palma is Balearic Day. Palma was buzzing as 100’s of stalls both local and from other regions of Spain sell their delicacies and specialities. Beers and gin produced locally were to be found and enjoyed as were the BBQ’s of a size that makes mine and I am sure of many readers look like a mini BBQ. Pigs, sausages and breads some of which I have never heard of pulled in the thousands that visited the Born, the park and the sea front with queues for food and drinks long but everyone was indeed patient. The sun shone which was perfect and the cold days of winter were soon forgotten.

Craft stalls with home made jewellery, local honey products, wines, meats and cheeses were all on offer and a great atmosphere and a relief to all as locals and foreign visitors alike crowded the stalls and sat in the park. For this one day only the Government Presidents building is open to view and inside is history in itself. If you could not visit then do put it on your to do list for next year. It is free entry but timed visits so planning your visit is a must.

The day was also magical for the children with rides and a super magician held both children and adults in awe on the big stage erected in the Born,which later was used for musicians as were the two stages in the Park. I saw one playing and the group “Estacion de Sonido were fantastic, Rock music and the group with drummer, guitarists and the lead singer had the huge crowd enjoying a concert of quality music. I for one, must check them out. There was something for everyone throughout the whole day and into the evening. Palma was alive again as it should be and mixing with, yes thousands, brought you back to normality and the 2 years of hiding away was a lost memory. Long may that continue as we move forward and away from restrictions. To see smiling faces, laughter and children enjoying themselves is what, in part the day was about. Fun, food, entertainment and celebrating Balearic Day, our islands day of self government and a peoples day of freedom once more on this wonderful and diverse island. Life started again for many and well done to all who organised this memorable event and to the volunteers that are always on hand for such events. A long day and the train back was again full with standing room only for many, but no complaints and with summer around the corner we can all look forward to many more days of events, fun and celebrations so missed in the past few years. I was so delighted to be part of the crowd and to report this to all our readers.

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