We left Nazare this morning at six o’clock this morning amidst groans from both of us about how early it was and how sleepy and tired we both were. The swell had died quite a bit but there were still some fairly big waves to go through. Our hopes of getting to Figueira da Foz (about 30 miles away) for lunch became obviously somewhat optimistic as we motored slowly into what wind there was. Happily though, once we’d eaten breakfast and watched two other large boats zoom past also heading north, the breeze began to back which meant we could motor sail and get somewhere. So we tacked up and down a couple of times, keeping inshore where there is north going current and after a while we were making a good line for Figueira da Foz at about four knots, which was not bad at all, and fast progress by our recent standards! It threatened to rain. It did rain, then stopped again and we got into Figueira da Foz at around five o’clock without too much trouble. Also without too much conversation or enthusiasm, as we’d accidentally picked up cheap coffee in the supermarket and as such were left with undrinkable granules that tasted of hot petrol and which both of us threw away after two sips. As a result, we were barely able to speak by the time we got here this afternoon.
Figueira do Foz is a funny sounding place, but appears to in fact have no connection with the Happy Days master of cool as we were speculating on the way over before the effects of caffeine withdrawal became apparent. The Fonz is not to be seen, but the mosquitos are, so we have been adding to the corpses that accumulated in the saloon following the Nazare massacre, when a cloud of them flew in through the hatch last night. We may have got a couple of bites, but they must have rued the day they stepped on Planet.
We managed to find shops and much needed showers, as well a seesaw and some swings, which had a go on (Age 3-14, on the basis that there are some much fatter fourteen year olds around) while we waited for the marina man to turn up. Then the heavens opened while were on our way to the supermarket, and we ran to the nearest café for shelter because it was so torrential we would have been drenched through in seconds. This would have happened especially quickly given the state of some of our clothes.
For some reason, getting to Gibraltar seemed to coincide with trousers, shorts and shoes falling apart. To be fair, sailing for nearly two years is pretty hard work if you are clothes, and withstanding sitting on non-slip surfaces while heeling and then surviving the rigours of commercial washing machines is a little too much to ask. I thought we’d managed to get rid of any items that were more holes than fabric, but then I noticed Si’s t-shirt….
Anyway, by the time the rain passed most of the shops were shut and instead we got charcoal barbecued chilli and lemon chicken from the best churrasqueira and now we’re crossing fingers that the rain will be gone by tomorrow.