For me, this time of the year is really special. Everyone and everything seems to slow down. The summer and most of the island’s visitors are gone, and while the air is cool, maybe a little chilly in the morning, the sea is still warm. There are wonderful sunny days with a clear blue sky and an amazing light. Thanks to the autumn rain, even the meadows got a new coat of green paint, some of them speckled over and over with tiny yellow blossoms, first heralds of the next spring. As if nature itself would celebrate the Advent season. It’s also the time, when Palma’s city workers set up the traditional Christmas lighting – one of the most beautiful light decorations I know.
In late November, even Port d’ Andratx looks more like a sleepy fishermen’s village than the meeting point of shiny happy people it has become over the last decades. On my hike to Sant Elm I pass the yachts that lie jacked up like stranded whales. Once I get to the mountain path the bay widens and the views are just stunning. In the East, the sea looks like liquid silver in the cool backlight of the low winter sun. In the west, the Dragonera island, my favorite scuba-diving spot, is surrounded by a roaring sea and bathed in golden light. Awesome!
Descending to Sant Elm, this end-of-season-feeling becomes even stronger. In the small bay, two surfers join the sole swimmer. A couple of hikers have a break in the only café around that’s open, silently they gaze at the horizon where the sea meets the sky. I have a cafe con leche and a boccadillo, too, before I take the bus back to Palma. On my return, the sun has already set and the yellow street lights turn the city into the scenery of a medieval play. Rainer Maria Rilke’s „Day in Autumn“ comes to my mind, and I am happy to be back home.