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Soller's disappearing inhabitants

Down a black hole

soller tunnel, old toll gates

There's a strange phenomenon occurring in Soller; its population is decreasing faster than it's ever done before and it's as if its inhabitants are just disappearing down a black hole – and in a way, they are!

Here in Spain we good and honest citizens have to register with our local council so that we can be counted, pay taxes and get one of the many benefits that accrue to us as a citizen of any borough. These benefits are wide ranging and diverse, for example in certain boroughs you're entitled to discounted cremation, in others, like Soller you get a massive discount on the toll to use the tunnel which links the town to the rest of Mallorca.

Well, you did, from €5.10 to €1.30, until charges for using the tunnel were abolished at the end of December. Now it's absolutely free, zip, nada, nothing to use the tunnel and this is coincidentally the date when defections from the population of Soller started to take place.

There's a theory that, given the rate of population decrease at three times its normal rate, that some unscrupulous tunnel users who did not live in Soller, were registering as if they did (maybe at the house of a friend or relative) to avoid paying around an extra €16 a day (4 journeys at €1.30 rather than €5.10) for five days a week, 48 weeks a year = €3,840!!!! Now, with no advantage in Soller, they're all off back to their own boroughs!

I can't believe that anyone would stoop so low as to do that for such a paltry amount, can you?