Lesley & Derek Mercer
Fri 26 Aug 2011 15:39
36:11.0N 05:56.2W
We have arrived in Barabate.  Uneventful passage from Cadiz, leaving at dawn:
The Guardia Civil were still hiding the entrance to the marina from any passing Brits:
With the eye of faith you can just see the entrance behind their large boat.
We passed fisherman on the jetty, and headed South.   Very few sailors around, but dozens and dozens of small fishing boats.  I don’t understand how all these men can spend all day out fishing.  They can’t all be retired or unemployed.  The evening before, when coming in to Cadiz, we had seen the professional fleet coming out at dusk.  About 30 or 40 very large vessels, about 25m in length, all towing a smaller vessel covered in nets and other fishing equipment, and heading out at speed in to the Atlantic.  I always keep a wide berth from them, as they have a tough reputation amongst sailors if you interfere with their “right” to catch anything that moves under the water.
We passed Cape Trafalgar, but had to give it a wide berth as there are rocks extending to the South West from the point which we wanted to avoid, but here is  a photo:
Arrived in Barbate, and explained that I was looking for a 2 week berth.  Much sucking of teeth, and explanations that only 7 days were allowed for visitors etc...  Eventually asked to return at 4.30 pm when “the boss”  would be present, so we sat it out on the Muelle de Espera.  Around 5 pm, I returned to the office.  The “boss” was a lady who explained that it was not really possible (despite the marina being half empty), so I explained that this was a family ‘matter’!  She then called the “big boss”, a gentleman, to the office (you would never guess that to run a marina this size, they need 3 ladies in the office, a lady “boss” and a gentleman “big boss” – yes you’re right, this is not a private marina but state run and determined not to make any profit).  The “big boss” kindly agreed to let me stay, subject to the usual restrictions, so here we are!  I switched my plans from La Linea, because I found better flights from Seville with Vueling, and I would always avoid Easyjet if I can!
The marina seems a good choice.  The staff are helpful when they can be, it is quiet with families around, and youngsters rollerblading etc...  Busy putting IOLA to bed, and will be back in UK Sunday evg.  The blog will therefore go quiet for 10 days or so.
Bye for now.