Returned yesterday from a 6-day trip to Deià, Mallorca, staying at Es Molí – on a recommendation from Hania and Jake. Lovely pool and smell of orange blossom. One day we went across to the hotel’s private cove, La Muleta, to find ourselves just about the only people there. Perfect.
Remarkable meal at Nama, an Asian restaurant in the centre of town. And a delightful visit to Robert Graves’ house, where we were alone for most of the visit. One of the most evocative museums I have enjoyed to date.
On the reading front, I raced through three Eric Ambler novels: Journey Into Fear (1940), A Kind of Anger (1964) and The Mask of Dimitrios (1939) was the order in which I read them, though I liked the first best.
A trip into nearby Sóller was notable for exhibitions of Picasso ceramics and works by Miró, but a rattle across to the port by tram was something of a disappointment. We stepped off the tram – then immediately stepped back on for the trip back to the town centre.
One thing that struck me was that the skies around Deià ached for birds of prey – and I keep a constant eye out for any. Only caught sight of a buzzard, twice, on the penultimate day – and then Elaine spotted what I think was a Lesser Kestrel as we were taxiing back to the airport.
A high point was standing in the stream of bees going into what I at first thought was a wild hive as we walked across to Cala Deià. But then I saw that the hive may have been partly concocted by a beekeeper, cut into the rock. Not sure, but it was a joy to see them – and on the same day that I learned that the European Parliament had voted for a near-total ban of neonicitinoid insecticides.
Had orange juices in the Ca Part March restaurant that featured in The Night Manager, but then the cove began to fill up, so we turned on our heels and walked back to town.
The bee news had me thinking back too my collision many moons ago with the top man of a major company that makes neonicotinoids. Once again, an example of a major industrial concern staking its case on its version of the science, only to find the science shifting seismically under its feet.
And was reminded how wildly wrong one’s own instincts can be when I was quite literally befriended by an amazingly metallic-looking and quite substantial beetle. It turned out to be a pine borer, and a considerable pest. I let it go. And then, later, we encountered an equally extraordinary beetle, which turned out to be a palm weevil, another pest – whose depredations are obvious in the trunks of many of the palms in the area. Again, we let it go about it pestilential ways.
Huge numbers of seriously dressed pedal cyclists passing through Deiá this week – culminating in many thousands streaming along the road under the hotel yesterday morning. Car drivers seemed well behaved in the circumstances.
Back to a very cold London, after bumping into a couple of very interesting people on the flight back to Heathrow.