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Date: 16 Jun 2009 10:45:08
Title: Nazare



39:35.02N 9:04.51W

10.00 16th June


As this is written we are heading north along the coast. We are motoring -
again! There is a large swell that must have come from some bad weather
further out in the Atlantic and a short chop superimposed on top. The
technical term is "lumpy" and it is no fun. It has been similar to this all
the way from Cascais and it has to be said that the First Mate has remained
stoical throughout.

At least it is not as bad as yesterday morning when we left Peniche. We had
been anchored in the lee of the harbour wall and although breezy we were
fine
and the water was flat. When we left however, we had to round the headland
that had been protecting us and there the sea was really lumpy. We only had
some 20 miles to go but it felt like twice that. To make matters worse the
wind got up and you can guess where it was coming from. As we approached the
entrance to the harbour at Nazare the wind increased further to 25+ knots.
The entrance looked forbidding with waves breaking on either side of the
wall but we were fearless (?) and in we went at a rate of knots (another
technical term). Inside of course it was fine and nothing to worry about. We
were being directed into the marina only to find that a Rally was about to
arrive and fill it up. It transpired that there were two marinas, the other
smaller one being run by a British couple, members of the Royal Naval
Sailing Association. and were made welcome there after first deciding we
were to large!

To celebrate our safe arrival we decided we would eat out, at least to give
the chef a rest . A bus into town to a restaurant recommended by our host
brought us to a typical local restaurant in a narrow back street (and there
are a lot of those in Nazare) where they announced they were to have a Fado
evening (food with local music for those that don't know) and we were
welcome to the two remaining spaces, but that it would not begin for
another two hours. We declined due to hunger and tiredness and we were fed
in advance, the skipper with a large plate of delicious grilled sardines and
first mate with salt cod both preceded with delicious fish soup. If you
ever find yourself in this pretty town it is worth seeking out Maria do Mar
run by her daughter Marina.

We walked back to the marina to let our larger dinner settle but by now
there was drizzle in the air. Surely not in Portugal in mid June? But yes,
and later even more persistent rain during the night that was also
accompanied by the eerie sound of the fog horn, all night.

First light saw us up, together with our neighbours, a Norwegian couple
taking their son's boat back to Norway. A quick stop at the fuel berth (we
are using a lot of diesel) and out of the harbour before 7am into the now
very familiar swell. This afternoon we should be in Figuera da Foz, the
harbour and town we became so familiar with in 2003 waiting for our new
gearbox.

We have had requests for a wildlife section and a gardening (?) section.
Wildlife? well we see birds occasionally but we are not sure what the are
called. We have seen dolphins but not for a few days. The gardening section
is in planning. We haven't been able to locate any soil and are a bit short
of plants so please be patient.




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