Dear Sir,
I have followed during the course of this summer the events concerning the ill wind that is blowing across these sceptred isles - it would appear that much is self created and self inflicted, true no one here is to blame for the world events afflicting tourism in general - nor are we to blame for the euro which has undoubtably made the comparison of prices that much easier for visitors.

We are however able to control - or at least in theory should be able to correct other ills - I perceive these islands as a sick patient who unfortunately is being cared for by a quack doctor.

Let us put aside political preferences and the characters involved and try and concentrate on the issue, getting the sick patient better.
Many are saying that it's a long term syndrome and won't recover until 2004 or beyond - why so long? Do they perhaps think that the doctor will be changed in June of 2003? Don't bank on that - the publicity machine is already in high gear and people have short term memories.

Are prices high? yes. Are shop assistants off hand? yes. Can people obtain better elsewhwere? - yes. Unfortunately this has been created by a belief that Majorca is the leading resort in Europe or even the world or so say the tourism experts. No, wrong! There are just as many resorts in Europe and elsewhere that can equal or surpass these islands. To those who disagree I say open your eyes, look around, travel to other areas, stop being such bigots. If you want tourism back then you have got to change the attitude that says “I can treat the means of my livelihood as a door mat and still expect them to return.” If they haven't already learned one of the basic recipes of commerce by now - and that is that people vote with their feet.

We understand that there is a conflict between Madrid and Balearics opposing political views creating damage for the average man in the street - may I suggest that they set aside that petty squabbling and get real, may I propose that Mr Aznar stops trying via Mr Matas to make life as difficult as possible for Mr Antich because we are the one's getting covered in the manure.

May I also suggest that Mr Antich spends a little less time trying to emulate Jordi Pujol - oh yes we know - cos we have been told enough how important the Majorcan heritage and language is - but the Mallorquins should have thought of that before they sold the family silver to all the Brits, Germans, etc. A case of closing the stable door after the horse has fled. Munar tells us that all people who live here are Majorcans. Fine, I am English but have Majorcan family and have no problem with this approach, however how far do you take this? Letters come from the ayuntamiento in Majorcan, even the parking tickets I purchase are in Majorcan so what about all the bars in Magalluf or Ca'n Pastilla? Do we alienate the visitor even further by putting all the signs and menus in Majorcan?

Better quality tourism and a quality destination can be created - yes, it will go a long way in improving the islands' image and fine - gather the rich tourists but remember and I speak as one who spent most of his working life in tourism, they are more demanding than the less affluent and at this moment unless attitudes change from the top down - you won't have to worry about them voting with their feet because their feet won't even touch Majorcan soil! I sincerely hope that all the advice your readers have placed with the pages of your paper does some good we are after all out there in the front line be it bar owners, shop keepers etc - though I wonder if it ever reaches the blinkered gurus in their ivory towers - I would like to think it does but then it's not written in Majorcan so probably doesn't count for anything!

Yours faithfully,

Alan Morriss. Calvià.

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