Beaches, bikinis and food, is all

So, I’m home from Mallorca, in front of my computer now, trying to claw my way back to the surface of reality.

Holidays always throw me into a dreamlike, soupy funk from which my ego refuses to emerge until I have unrelentingly walloped it in the face with a wooden spoon so that it has no choice but to come to its senses.

As you can tell by the way I am speaking in abstracts, I have not quite found surface. But I am sober enough to update my blog by now, even if I haven’t gained sufficient lucidity to write in a non-trippy way.

Therefore, I think it would be wise for me to write less and show more.

That means photos!

 

Sheylara in Mallorca

 

All photos were taken in Cala d’Or, Mallorca, a little beach town from which Piers and I didn’t venture an inch because we are lazy bums.

But there is really no need to go anywhere when you have sand, sea and sun (and, in my case, iPad) within reach.

 

 

Not so hot dog legs

My version of hot dog legs.

 

 

Cala d'Or beach

Cala d’Or beach is tiny at 40 metres wide, perfect for families with little ones because it will be really hard for you to lose your little ones here (unless you’re an iPad addict, then I can’t say for sure).

 

 

Sheylara in Black and White

The town centre has a great selection of cafés, restaurants and bars (and shops) for your hedonic pleasure.

 

 

Seafood Paella

Seafood Paella is a one such pleasure.

 

 

Sangria

Sangria is another.

 

 

Padron Peppers

And Padrón peppers, which are so very, very tasty and full of wholesome goodness, containing vitamins A, B1, B2, C and P, proteins, calcium and iron.

 

 

Garlic mushrooms

I love Spanish food because it is so generous with seasonings, herbs and flavours. This garlic mushroom dish had nearly as much garlic as mushrooms.

I ate up all the garlic.

Piers didn’t mind.

 

 

Bread and olives with ali oli sauce

Bread and olives with alioli (or aioli) sauce are a common starter in Spanish meals. I love the sauce. It’s a blend of garlic, olive oil, salt and egg yolk.

 

 

Dress-down weekend

The best thing about going on holiday is being able to buy new holiday clothes (without telling Piers).

 

 

Bikini

This is one of the bikinis that I bought two years ago and forgot to pack for my first Mallorca holiday. I never wore it until now.

 

 

White bikini

And another one.

I bought four in all. Which is quite stupid considering that I never go to the beach (or even swimming pool) if I can help it.

 

 

Just another

Cala d’Or beach is a couple minutes’ walk from the Marina de Cala d’Or, where you can find a good selection of restaurants and a few shops. And lots of boats, of course.

 

 

More peppers

More Padrón peppers, because I can.

 

 

Sirloin steak with Roquefort Sauce

We ate lunch at this restaurant called Zocalo, which offers a 3-course meal (with choices for each course) for only €15. Piers and I had the peppers for starters and sirloin steak with Roquefort Sauce for mains.

I didn’t know what Roquefort Sauce was so I asked the waiter, who said in halting English, “Uh… is… ahh… creme.”

It turned out to be a cheesy cream sauce which is really nice for vegetables but I don’t like it on my steak.

Also the steak looked a bit sad and pathetic, which made me a bit sad. But it explained the €15 price tag.

 

 

Right. That’s too much said, and two too many bikini photos shown.

Don’t you think?

Next time, I will talk about jellyfish.

What I do in Mallorca

I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to blog from Mallorca but it appears that I’m able to. The wifi is good and I have pockets of free alone time, which is when everyone’s at the beach. Except me.

I’m in Cala d’Or, Mallorca, for a 9-day holiday with Piers and his family. We’re staying in a villa just a minute’s walk away from the beach, and the family’s plan is to practically live on the beach the whole time.

 

Beach

 

My plan is to not live on the beach. I’m quite happy to lounge around in the airy villa all day, enjoying the full protection of a sturdy roof.

 

Villa

 

I did go to the beach in the morning. There was a section of shade I could hide under because the sun was still low and hiding behind a line of trees.

 

Sheylara

 

But, eventually, the sun got me and there was no hiding. So I got up and built little Emma a sand throne. At least, that was what I set out to do before Piers decided to help by turning it into a sand race car.

 

image

 

Emma got into it and was quite happy with it for a bit, but then half destroyed it when she tried crawling out via the hood.

By the way, if my photos and drawings are extra crappy, it’s because I didn’t bring my laptop and am blogging from my iPad.

Anyway, one morning of sun, sand and sea was quite enough for me, and I came back to the villa while the others stayed to enjoy the beach all day.

 

Sheylara

 

That’s all I’m going to say today! It’s taken me three hours to produce this silly post, mainly because I’ve got a stupid long-winded process to get photos onto my iPad and then into the blog.

Oh, Piers just came back to the villa and he’s gone all red, lol. He won’t admit it, though (he claims it’s a nice brown) so here’s a photo of His Redness.

 

Piers

 

Heh.

Tiny beautiful beaches in Cala d’Or

Following our tradition of impromptu vacationing, Piers only started Google searching for our next location a day before we had to leave our current location.

We were in Palma, the main city in Mallorca. We decided we wanted to stay at a beach, next, so Piers started going through lists on the Internet.

First hotel on the list was full.

Second hotel was full.

Third hotel had one vacancy. Bingo.

So it was totally due to chance that Cala d’Or became our next location.

 

Cala Esmerelda cove
Cala Esmerelda cove in the city of Cala d’Or.

 

Cala d’Or is a resort city built around many beautiful cove beaches which look like they could be the smallest beaches in the world. (I think “cala” means cove.)

They’re the smallest I have ever seen, anyway. I never knew beaches could be that tiny.

Although tiny, they’re beautiful. Each features clean, fine sand as well as sparkling clear seawater lapping gently at the rocks forming a beautiful natural cove that, at a point, widens out into the Mediterranean Sea.

We stayed at the Barcelo Ponent Playa Hotel, built right on top of Cala Ferrera beach, which boasts a whole 60 metres of shoreline, the longest in Cala d’Or. (The shortest shoreline belongs to Cala Serena at 20 metres.)

 

Cala Ferrera Beach

Cala Ferrera beach

 

Cala Ferrera beach
The shore length may be short but the width is something else!

 

Piers making our camp
Piers arranges our parasol and towels so that I get shade and he gets sun.

 

Cala Ferrera beach
Our view from our camp spot.

 

Piers on the beach
Piers will kill me for this photo.

 

Piers on the beach
There are fruit hawkers on almost every beach presenting their sales pitches by wailing in singsong manner.

 

Piers on the beach
View of our hotel from the beach at night.

 

While the beach was lovely, I can’t say the same for the hotel.

We had a good first impression. The lobby looked decent, the staff was very friendly and helpful, and we had a basic but clean room with a balcony overlooking the hotel pool.

 

Barcelo Ponent Playa Hotel

Sheylara

 

It took some time before we realised that the aircon wasn’t working. It blew stale, lukewarm air. At night, the air outside was cooler than in our room. The tap water had a diluted salty taste.

 

Barcelo Ponent Playa

 

On our second night, I woke up in the middle of the night with a hangover (thanks to our three jugs of sangria), feeling intensely dehydrated after two sessions of throw-up. We had run out of water and, obviously, the tap water couldn’t be drunk.

There was no room service and no bar fridge. It was past 2 am. I resigned myself to death by dehydration.

Fortunately, Piers suddenly remembered vending machines at the car park so he ran out to get some water for me.

Only Coke was available, but that was okay. That was good. It made me feel better.

And then the noise started.

 

Barcelo Ponent Playa

 

Every half an hour, a truck or a coach would pull into the hotel driveway, either chugging loudly or reverse beeping annoyingly. Some would stay for only two minutes before rumbling off, but some chugged in the driveway for a good ten minutes.

I thought they were maybe trucks delivering goods or something, but Piers said they were coaches delivering tourists (he went out the balcony to look once). This went on every 30-60 minutes for the next five hours.

Why would there be so many tourists arriving nonstop in the middle of the night?

We hardly slept all night and, at 8 am, I woke a groggy Piers up for breakfast because my hangover was demanding fruit and toast in epic quantities.

I was glad we were only there for two nights.

 

Sangria
Sangria aka source of my hangover. One jug at lunch and two jugs at dinner.

 

If we were to go to Cala d’Or again, I might choose to stay at the Inturotel Cala Esmerelda Hotel, which is situated by the Cala Esmerelda beach.

It’s only a short walk from where we stayed. Wherever you stay in Cala d’Or, you’d probably be within walking proximity of at least two beaches.

Cala Esmerelda is smaller than Cala Ferrera but prettier, all 40 metres of its shoreline.

 

Cala Esmerelda Beach

Cala Esmerelda beach

 

Cala Esmerelda beach

 

Cala Esmerelda beach

 

Clear, sparkling sea

 

Sheylara in the sea

 

Sheylara in the sea

 

Sheylara on the beach

 

We briefly visited a third beach, Cala d’Or beach, but I don’t know why it’s called that, since it’s one of the smaller ones (35m shoreline) and not like in the centre of Cala d’Or or anything.

The area around this beach seems quite luxurious, populated by beautiful white holiday bungalows. The Cala d’Or Hotel is right beside the beach, looking gorgeously Mediterranean. I would love to stay there if we ever go back to Mallorca.

The beach is really crowded though, cos it’s so tiny. But the cove is just as beautiful as the others, if not more.

Well, they kind of all look the same after a while, to be honest, so I’m very proud of myself for being able to remember which is which.

 

Cala d’Or Beach

Cala d'Or beach

 

Apart from beaches, there’s a nice marina in Cala d’Or filled with Sunseeker boats which Piers excitedly recognised because Sunseekers are made in Poole, the town next door to us.

Piers is a bit silly about boats, almost as silly as he is about planes and cars.

When we’re at a marina, I tend to marvel at the water sparkling in the sun while he drools at the big boats.

We’d go, “Wow!!!!” in unison but we’d be wowing at different things.

 

Marina Cala d’Or

Cala d'Or marina

 

Along the banks of the marina are elegantly styled restaurants and club houses. We ate at one of those restaurants on our last day in Cala d’Or.

I had roast suckling pig. It is apparently a speciality in Mallorca.

 

Roast suckling pig

 

It was alright. Tasted a bit like German pork knuckles. Chinese suckling pig tastes better, but that’s a different dish, I suppose, since we mostly eat only the skin.

The French onion soup was great. I have never liked French onion soup but have acquired a taste for it since coming to the UK.

 

French onion soup

 

The carbonara was not so great.

 

Spaghetti Carbonara

 

Restaurants are like a box of chocolate. You never know whether the dish you pick is good or bad. Until it’s too late.

There’s a nice Mexican grill called El Patio in the town centre at Cala Ferrera. You can’t miss it. The town centre is tiny.

You go up to the second floor where it’s really breezy, taking care not to trip over the fake Mexican dude lying on the steps.

 

El Patio Restaurant

El Patio

 

I don’t know if the grills are any good but I really enjoyed the breeze.

They serve unlimited BBQ pork ribs there (eat all you can for one price) and it looked quite good. We saw a guy having it.

We were kind of full at that time so only ordered some snacks. They were very good.

My fried chicken wings were perfectly crispy, juicy and tasty, salted just right. They came with an interesting dip that was sort of like a cross between sweet chilli sauce and BBQ sauce.

 

Fried chicken wings

 

My grilled corn was so sweet, juicy and crunchy, just the right amount of doneness. The corn came with a giant pat of delicious herb butter which would be the death of you if you attempted to clean it all up.

 

Herb butter

 

I would have gone back there for another meal since we were in Cala d’Or for about three days, but then our hotel booking included complimentary breakfast and dinner (unremarkable buffet fare) so we didn’t have many meals outside the hotel.

We just had a lot of sangria.

You must have sangria if you go to Spain. We had five jugs at different establishments and they were all great.

Okay, I think I’ve just about covered everything I can (or want to) about Cala d’Or.

Coming up in the next post, the amazing gorgeous villa where we spent a week of our vacation.

Check back soon!

 

Sheylara at the Marina
Sheylara at the Marina.