When Sara and I bought the apartment one of the things we loved was that we could walk to all the shops we would need, and use public transport for getting around the island, thus avoiding all the hassles of vehicle ownership. Well that didn’t quite work out because as per previous entries you will see that we rode the motorbike bike down here from Scotland.

To compound this change, we have now bought a car!! which just goes to show that as Robert Burns stated; “the best laid plans of mice and men……….”

The process for buying a second hand car in Spain is complicated to say the least. I wont give you chapter and verse but one of the peculiarities is that any fines outstanding whether parking, speeding or whatever stick with the car and not the owner. In other words one could buy a car in good faith and be legally lumbered with debts. There are other things like a vehicle can be registered as a commercial vehicle (this applies to both cars and vans) and as such there are different speed restrictions on main roads. There are also more regular MOT’s for a commercial registered vehicle after it reached ten years old it needs an MOT every six months. Plus lots of other (to us) complicated legislation. Another peculiarity is that road tax is subject to a complicated calculation which also depends on the local area where one lives, but this is a lot less than the UK.

To avoid all the potential pitfalls we decided to buy our first car through a dealer, fully understanding that we would be paying a bit more than a private sale, but the legal onus is on the dealer for a number of the above points and more.

We are having the vehicle changed from commercial to private use and this necessitates the vehicle going back to the MOT station on the 23rd of this month. The dealer is the one who must do this after getting a particular document from Peugeot…………don’t ask because I don’t know the answer. The only thing I know is that we now have a Peugeot Partner Tepee Outdoor and are still puzzling over the difference between our initial perception (no vehicle)and the actual reality (motorbike and car)………………!!!

Mooring Sun Dog

During the winter we had a stainless steel guy make a change to the already adjusted stainless steel frame at the back of the boat so that it would accommodate a larger solar panel. This solar panel needed to be fitted and wired up before launching the boat. My mate Ian (thanks again for all your help matey) and I had run all the wiring back in January along with a shed load of other work, but I still had to fit the panel, regulator, fuse holder etc. All sounds straight forward……but this is boat work we are talking about and its simply NEVER straightforward. Trying to source a proper fuse holder to take a 20amp fuse was exasperating, but eventually I sourced one and completed the work prior to launch.

I need the additional input from this solar panel as I run the Ultrasonic Antifouling system 24/7 and as the boat will not be in a marina, it needs to be self sufficient when on a swinging mooring. Now that’s a whole other story, to explain:

There are a few reasons we have been given about the origins of the concrete blocks in the bay;

One is, that until the 1950’s there were no proper roads into this area and as such the only way into the Formentor Hotel (an exclusive hotel back then for those and such as those – Churchill, Grace Kelly, Kissinger et al and not to shabby today either) was by seaplane, and to anchor these seaplanes, concrete blocks of various sizes were laid in the bay. Another one is that the German Condor Squadron that was based here had them laid for their planes. All i know is that some of these blocks are substantial and would not have been done by a local fisherman from his wee boat!

Nowadays, there is a bit of a bun fight at times over “ownership” of these blocks and trying to find a free one is a bit of a challenge.

Sara and I spent a day out in the dinghy trying to find one and cutting a long story short we were successful, albeit its a bit of a way out in the bay necessitating longer dinghy trips. I had to source suitable chain, shackles, mooring buoy etc, and with the service of a local diver connecting the chain to the blocks. So Sun Dog has now been launched and is quite happy on her swinging mooring, and so are we. Furthermore no one has yet said the mooring block was theirs 🙂

We checked out the costs of keeping the boat in the Real Club Puerto Pollensa but it is seriously expensive. To get the best berthing rate one needs to join the club at 20,000 euros – yes you read correctly 20,000 euros and then the annual membership, with berthing costs are over and above this – and there was me thinking Spain was in a bit of financial difficulty. With the marina being full its obviously not an issue for lots of folks here!