For most of us 2020 has been a year to forget. Normality hasn’t been a word commonly used this year or if it has it, it’s been known as the “New Norm”. With that in mind it has slowly but dawned on us that our normal family Christmas isn’t going to happen. Ever since I moved here in 1990, Christmas has always been celebrated in the UK. I’m a firm believer it’s a time for families to come together and celebrate. Unfortunately it’s not going to be possible with all the problems that this year has brought. My Wife and I both have elderly Mothers and the risk for them is too great, even if we take a test before we go. Also we are quite a big family so getting us all together from all the different tiers is all but impossible. We also thought about all the things we like to do apart from seeing our families, like going to pubs, going to restaurants, watching football, going to the theatre, going to the cinema, visiting London, are all going to be difficult to do too. We have always said to ourselves that it would be nice one year to spend it here, so this is our year. I do bang on about how great this island is all the time, so I’m coming round to enjoying a festive time here.
Whilst it will be tough not seeing our families we will be able to see them virtually through Zoom like we did every weekend when we did quizzes together during the lockdown.
Last week we went out shopping and did the no IVA(VAT) day at the Mallorca outlets. We went earlier than last time but even in the daytime it was just as bad as going in the evening. We queued the best part of 45 minutes just to get into Nike and as we only had 2 hours because of the school run. We only managed 2 shops in 2 hours. At the weekend we went tree shopping. We felt that as this probably won’t be a yearly thing we would buy a real tree rather than an artificial one. We went to that garden centre opposite Carrefour on the Via de Cintura behind the Iberostar building. You know the one! They’ve just changed their name, well I say just, I don’t know when they did but I still can’t remember it. Anyway they have a great choice of trees, you pick the one you want and they wrap it in netting, making it easier to transport.
It now has pride of place in our lounge and dare I say it “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.”
I’m enjoying going round looking for the things we would normally buy in the UK but trying to find them here. We’ve been sent a few things from the UK but the majority will be bought here. We live in Calvia where the Town Hall has come up with a great idea to help local businesses. Each person over the age of 16 who is registered at the Town Hall can buy a voucher for 10€ and when you go to spend it, it’s worth 20€. There are 2 per adult available. So basically they are giving you 10€ per voucher to spend with local businesses. The list of businesses can be found on the Town Hall website.
I am fully aware that this Christmas will be a struggle for quite a lot of people here on the island. On the radio we’ve always done a Christmas appeal but this year more than ever we need your help.
We are helping the Salvation Army by buying presents for the children, the Fundación Nazaret by buying all the children a gift card for Primark. Son Espases we are paying for a years subscription to Netflix that is used on the iPads in the Intensive Care Unit for Children. Age Concern we are buying supermarket vouchers that can be distributed to the people they are helping. For the Santa Ponsa Food Bank and Yachting Gives Back we are collecting food donations and buying more food. Finally, SOS Animal Mallorca we are helping with food supplies.
Normally we would help around four charities but this year because of all of the problems we have tried to help as many as we can.
Please deliver all donations to us at the Radio Station at The Wave House Hotel in Magaluf or at our drop off points around the island. Feel free to call me on 670 704 311 and I can always arrange a pick up.
We can take money donations via our charity bank account and credit card or cash donations too.
In the past two weeks a few people of a more mature age have come into the studio and donated money saying they would like to see it help others. You know who you are so thank you. That for me sums it all up and I know from all the charity work I’ve done on the island the people of Mallorca will always step up to the plate.
If you know of anyone who is on their own please check on them to see if they’re ok and if they need anything. Christmas can also be a lonely and stressful time for some and it doesn’t take much to knock on someone’s door to check if they’re ok.
Ultimately, Christmas is as much about giving as it is receiving. It’s embedded in our culture as a time where we give to those less fortunate than ourselves.
Take care everyone and enjoy your weekend!
Richie presents the Radio One Mallorca Breakfast show Monday to Friday 07.30-11.00am on 93.8fm in Mallorca and 102fm in Calvià, online at www.radioonemallorca.com on mobile through their free App for IPhone & Android, The Tunein Radio App, iTunes, the Spanish TDT TV service and all smart speakers. If you can’t hear him on the radio then you’ll find him working at Pirates Adventure the islands number one night out and every now and again he may make an understudy appearance!
Follow him on Twitter @DadTaxi1 & Instagram @dad.taxi or feel free to email him at firstname.lastname@example.org