Read in Catalan

Whilst Elsa Artadi, Catalan presidency minister, and Meritxell Batet, Spanish territorial policy minister, are trying to agree the meeting between president Quim Torra and new Spanish prime minister Pedro Sánchez, king Felipe VI has also found his way into the president's diary. The occasion will be next Friday's opening ceremony of the 2018 Mediterranean Games, to be held in Tarragona, Catalonia.

Despite the monarch's presence not yet having been officially confirmed, it's taken for granted that he will preside over the opening of such an event. He has already played a leading role in parts of the preparation for the games, like putting together the committee of honour.

Nor has the Catalan president confirmed his attendance. His office is still considering what his response should be. "It's being studied. All possibilities are open", is as much as sources will say on the matter.

Torra sent his first message to the king even as he was giving his investiture speech in the Parliament. After recalling the repression Catalonia is suffering and its political prisoners, he said in Spanish "Majesty, not like that". Those were exactly the words his predecessor Carles Puigdemont used on 4th October in his response to the king's speech the previous day after the independence referendum.

The last time Felipe VI travelled to Catalonia was in April for the graduation ceremony for this year's new judges, accompanied by then justice minister Rafael Catalá. There was no representative of the Catalan government present, then under direct control from Madrid, but nor was there a hostile atmosphere in the auditorium.

It was a very different visit to the one he made in February, when the king presided over the opening dinner of the Mobile World Congress, another event with no Catalan government presence. At that event, the speaker of the Catalan Parliament, Roger Torrent, avoided applauding him. The streets around Barcelona's Palau de la Música, where the dinner was held, were closed that evening, but that didn't prevent the monarch from hearing the displeasure of independence supporters who filled some of the empty streets with chants and the himno de Riego, the anthem of Republican Spain.

The event in Tarragona will be his first trip to Catalonia since the swearing in of the new Catalan government, which has allowed the president to take back the reigns from Madrid. It will indicate the monarch's response to the return of normality, and the tone Torra intends to take with the crown.

Many doubts, therefore, to be resolved. And thoughts are already turning to the king's next commitment in Catalonia, the presentation of the Princesa de Girona awards on 28th June. The city council, which has declared him persona non grata, has already let him know they can't let him use the city's auditorium as normal, saying works will have started by then. Indeed, the city's mayor, Marta Madrenas, has said she wants to avoid them using it ever again (link in Catalan).