It’s been a while since my last blog, as my husband, our two children and I, accompanied by my parents, have been on holiday in Majorca. A good time was had by all, except, that is, for the first day…….
We arrived at Palma airport ready to pick up our hire car and drive the one hour journey to our holiday flat. Having spent over an hour retrieving our suitcases and then two more hours waiting to pick up our car, we finally set off.
Within 15 minutes, we’d broken down on the motorway with a flat tyre. Unable to get the tyre off the wheel, and with no instruction manual in the car (nor, indeed, emergency red triangle), we had to phone for help. There we were, stranded at the edge of the motorway, in the blazing Majorcan sun, with no food or drink (not being allowed to carry this onto the aeroplane), with 2 young children and 2 elderly parents.
Numerous phone calls and an hour and a half later, we were eventually spotted by two Spanish police officers. They helped us remove the faulty tyre (10 hard kicks with a boot!) only to discover that both front tyres had been worn threadbare by the car itself and the vehicle was not driveable. The police then drove to a nearby shop and brought back a bottle of water to stop us completely dehydrating.
Another hour later, the car was taken away on a breakdown lorry, and after 3 hours by the motorway we were eventually rescued. But by this time we’d given up on the hire car completely, and were driven to our flat, arriving 5 hours later than we should have done.
Despite the horrendous start to our holiday, we had the most fantastic time away. Everything else felt wonderful after our unhappy experience – the view from our flat when we arrived, a cool drink and meal out, a rest in a beautiful scenic part of the country. We even spent a glorious day travelling the length of Majorca by public transport – train, then tram, then bus – something I’m sure we would not have done if we’d kept the hire car.
I wouldn’t want to repeat our horrible experience, and wouldn’t wish it on anyone else. Yet it heralded the start of a fantastic holiday. It really was the case that ‘every cloud has a silver lining’.