Next day we set off for Cape Finisterre - and it was
dead calm!! We motored into Ria de Muros and anchored outside the harbour
at Portosin - just off a lovely little beach. We ended up staying in Portosin
for 5 days due to bad weather. Portosin is very small, but with some nice
walks and beaches. So how did we spend the time? ..... don't know really,
life is just too busy....... Thursday 18th, was spent dog sitting! Some
other friends from a boat called "Zilver" (from Holland) have
a lovely black labrador with them. Mary-Anne had been having a bad toothache
and had arranged an appointment in Noia, which is a bus ride away, and
wanted someone to look after the dog, while they were away. So we became
pet sitters for the day, which was fun.
Friday was spent socialising, reading and shopping. Saturday we organised
a barbecue on the beach, which was fun. In the end six boats came with
a total of 14 people. We stayed until gone midnight, still very warm.
Sunday we woke up to a dull day with lots of wind, so we decided to go
into the Marina. The wind blew and it rained until Monday 22nd. Although
during the showers Keith managed to fix the wind generator, which had
loose magnets and also the guide for the anchor, which had bent. The marina/yacht
club allowed him to use their workshop, which was very useful.
We finally got away on Tuesday 23rd and headed for Vigo. As we were leaving
Ria de Muros we were joined by a group of dolphins, which was a great
bonus - although they never stay around to photograph! We had a very good
sail that day and anchored in the next ria (Ria de Arosa) for the night,
just off a beach. In the morning we woke up to find people walking around
the boat! - well, wading really. Looking for cockles in the sand with
long rakes!!!!. All the rias, although very pretty, were starting to look
the same, so we left there early in order to make Vigo. The wind was light
and the weather fine so we sailed most of the day. Just off Vigo there
is a group of islands called the Isla de Cies. As it was a fine night
we decided to anchor in one of the bays overnight and ended staying two
days because it was so beautiful. We were anchored in 5 meters of water
and we could see the starfish on the bottom. Just like an aquarium. Had
some lovely walks and just laid on the beach for most of the day. Christine
even went in for a swim, although the water is still a bit chilly.
The next day we motored over to Vigo and tied up in a Marina. Vigo itself
is not much to write home about, but we took the opportunity to visit
another Internet cafe - and we think we may have finally got our website
working - even if it's not quite how we want it yet. If you want to look
the address is www.pocoandante.dial.pipex.com. We've put some photos there...
But it has taken so long for us to figure out that already they are out
of date! Hurray....... we can start improving it now we understand the
technology. However, we have had a shock in that our phone bill over the
last month or so has been huge, together they were over £400! So
we will have to cut down on phone calls!
Anyway, on Sunday we left Vigo for Portugal and arrived at Viana do Castelo
late that evening - after a super sail out of Vigo (reaching at 7.5 knots)
but then the wind died and we motored some of the way before picking up
some very light airs (3.5knots of wind). We finally arrived at about 11pm
and didn't fancy trying to navigate up the channel and into the marina
at low water, so we anchored off the beach outside. But just as we were
approaching, we were joined by a small group of dolphins playing around
our bows - and although it was night time they were visible under the
water by the phosphorescence. Very early next morning we came into the
marina (after a very bumpy night due to Atlantic rollers) and explored
the town yesterday. Now we're stuck here again because of a gale warning
just to the South - but, hey, what a place to be stuck! A couple of other
yachts that we know have also arrived - so the party continues...
So what has life been like...............
The navigation is much easier than we thought. No real hazards or tides
to worry about; there is always a harbour close by if you have had enough,
although only a fishing village, but shelter is usually good. The wind
has mostly been either 10-15 knots or blowing a gale, which has usually
been forecasted a couple of days in advance. Normally we have been doing
30-40 miles a day, leaving at about midday and arriving at the next destination
in the evening. We have been getting in a routine of travelling daily
during the week and stopping somewhere during the weekend. The social
life has been great, with lots of people willing to share a beer and a
tale in the evening. The trick is just to have a friendly welcoming smile.
The main problem is to find time to oneselves sometimes. Reading, boat
chores and shopping are the main time consuming exercise. Reasonable supermarkets
are sometimes hard to find and as there is minimum storage we are only
buying three to four days of fresh produce at a time. We get disappointed
if the sun does not shine - but just sitting on deck watching the world
go by and chatting to passersby is not a bad way to spend the day. And
cloudy or rainy days give us a chance to catch up on emails and sleep!
There are always new places to explore and when we have had enough of
one place, or it's not to our liking, we move on. Budget-wise we seem
to be coping, although shocks like phone bills etc. (which seem to be
a common problem) don't help. Kim (who is looking after our mail and business
matters), has been absolutely brilliant and her help in communicating
bills etc. has been tremendous. Thanks, Kim!. Most of the other cruisers
we meet have been great, always willing to lend something or give advice.
The community is certainly what we'd hoped for - and more.
Next plans include Oporto, Lisbon, Lagos, Cadiz ... We borrowed a pilot
book for the Moroccan coast - and now we're thinking of exploring there!