Morna Valley is before me like a giant who I never saw before, but that was my neighbor lifetime.
Jose Olavarria shows me the way. With over twenty years living on the island he combines the sale and installation of solar panels with his artistic side designing, manufacturing and selling incredibly beautiful pendants and bracelets made with ceramic polymer.
We have come up the Cami des Forn des Saig with the Klever Mobility electric bikes. A dirt road that is forest track, climbing for several kilometers to a pretty high hill from where one can enjoy breathtaking views.
My friendship with Jose comes from the 90s, a decade of great transformation in Ibiza, with the emergence of electronic music as a benchmark for freedom, a vehicle for social protest and a tool to keep stay in the forefront of undefined social movements, but that has set the basis for much of what we see and live today on the island.
I realize that one thing is to wander around Ibiza using the back roads and visiting charming spots. Another is to use these rural roads to visit spectacular corners and hidden places not only to the conventional tourist, but to many of the usual inhabitants of the island.
Q. There is no doubt that things change. Ibiza has changed much in the last twenty years. What is it that keeps you on the island?
A. Ibiza is a good place to live an alternative life. I love nature, beaches and the variety of its people. It is an open and tolerant society.
Q. During our ride we saw that many houses are already using solar panels. Are they difficult to maintain? Are they expensive to buy and install?
A. Solar systems require minimal maintenance. They are the ideal solution for isolated houses. Pricewise, it depends on the system size. You can find complete kits from 1500 €
Q. If there is something in Ibiza this must be sunny days. Is Ibiza in the forefront or in the rear with respect to the production of private solar power?
A. Neither one nor the other. I think individuals are ahead of the authorities who give conflicting signals. We need to encourage the use of solar panels and not build obstacles.
Q. Could you say that a family, a house, could be energy self-sufficient using solar panels?
A. Not only one family, also a town or city. I hope that in the future, the whole world.
Q. We are also interested in your artistic side. You design, make and sell jewelry made of polymer ceramics in the famous hippy market Las Dalias. Where do you get your inspiration to create so many different models?
A. I like the Flower Power ’60s aesthetic.
Q. Is your artistic side linked … to the special light of the island? Do your two activities complement each other?
A. The colors are the shape the light takes before our eyes. I love combining the colors even when I fail. You learn a lot from mistakes.
Q. A favorite cove
A. Ses Caletes, Cala Xuclá, Benirrás, many
Q. A favorite restaurant
A. Any with Sushi.
Q. Any recommendations for a night out?
A. Yes, have fun anywhere you go.
Q. Three recommendations to visitors.
A. Prudence on the road, careful with the jellyfish and forget the all included!
Q. In short, what you think of the electric bikes you’ve tried?
A. Great. We did 20 kilometers up and down the hills with ease. It is a well thought out and designed vehicle.
Q. Finally, do you see the development of the island in a positive way?
A. It is a complicated issue. The balance between development and sustainability is hard to achieve here and anywhere. I hope we are smart enough to do it, otherwise …
Jose, thank you very much for your answers.
To order and install a phtovoltaic system contact: Jose Olavarria: email@example.com