I knew almost nothing about Marjorca (i.e. Mallorca) when I landed there for my writers retreat. I was “all about the writing, the writing, no vacation..” Even so, I couldn’t help wanting to put part of my experience there in words.
Majorca is an island in the Mediterranean belonging to Spain but with Roman influences. To me, it is reminiscent of the great Southwest in the United States: dry heat, agave, lightly shrubbed mountainous terrain, pear cacti and aloe vera growing wild. Imagine chopping a 1400 sq. mile portion of northern New Mexico out with a dull butcher knife and dropping it into aquamarine and sapphire seas.
Pink and white blooming acacia lines the highway as we drive from Palma on one side of the island to Peurto Pollensa on the other. This plant and much of the high desert flora reminds my host
of where she grew up in California. To her, Mallorca feels like home with a lower cost of living and no property taxes; probably two reasons she and her husband have purchased a fabulously situated flat here. At market the Acacia honey is often the lightest, clearest option among the widest range of colors I’ve ever seen for one small location. On Mallorca the trees lining the streets are often spreading pines, from which the bees make the darkest honey like molasses in appearance and strength of taste. (More on the Markets in another blog)
I discovered Majorca is a good place for a writer and a writing retreat. According to Wikipedia: “George Sand, at that time in a relationship with Chopin, described her stay in Majorca in A Winter in Majorca, published in 1855…” and “Agatha Christie visited the island in the early 20th century and stayed in Palma and Port de Pollença. She would later write the book Problem at Pollensa Bay and Other Stories, a collection of short stories, of which the first one takes place in Port de Pollença, starring Parker Pyne.
Puerto Pollensa you say? Right where my host lives – the view I take in morning and night!
I’m not here for the sights, the water, the sun, markets or food, though. I am here to write, and all the rest are welcome only during small breaks. Otherwise they distract. Let’s face it, waking to the view, the tantalizing 10 minute walk to crystal waters is a distraction. I refrain, only going twice in 10 days to squish the larger-grained wet sand through my toes. This sand reminds me of creme-of-wheat with its round texture felt rolling against the skin on the sides of my feet.
So what if I can’t fit everything in on my work-a-tion.
There’s always next time.