Tue 1 Sep 2009 15:34
Course: tacking out the entrance
Wind: West sou' west, light. Sea calm on a moderate swell.
Weather: Sunny, mild.
While Muros is a bit bigger than a village it was still very interesting and I am glad we stopped there. After getting some boat chores done - more painting, I went ashore in the late afternoon for a look around and to buy a few essential supplies, most importantly to track down some engine oil of which I had none. As with many European cities it was obvious that Muros has been around a lot longer then the motor car. Three story stone buildings lined wonderful narrow streets zig-zagging unpredictably this way and that, even narrower laneways barely wide enough for two people to pass invited one to wander down and get hopelessly lost, and numerous stone arches of various sizes, mostly relatively small, dominated the architectural style. .After I had located some engine oil at a small chandlery adjacent the harbour and witnessed the local fish catches being auctioned off, I wandered further through the back streets, where I found a magnificent old church of dark weathered stone, just waiting to be used as a scene in an old Clint Eastwood 'spaghetti western'. I peeked inside, its cool dark interior was broken into sections by three huge arches spanning high over the interior. Respectful of other people's superstitions, curiosity satisfied, I quietly snuck out and continued to explore. One curiosity which I was unable to interpret was what looked like a stone chook house on stone stilts (this is starting to sound like the Flintstones). Long stone slabs were stacked on top of one another with narrow slits in between each layer. Either a hen house or maybe a place where miscreants were secured to ponder their sins for a while, being close to the church would perhaps have made a good impression on church-going citizenry each Sunday and help them remain clear of the Inquisition. The old town was surrounded by more modern apartments and houses, though with little room in between, and certainly no sign of a shopping mall or car park. I passed one small bookstore and looked ruefully in without entering, what a great place to sell books, a pity they are all in Spanish, though perhaps a good thing as old Sylph is a little overloaded already and it is going to take me a few years to read my backlog as it is.
A couple of cervezas enjoyed on the esplanade was followed by a quiet evening on board.
This morning dawned still and sunny, the water flat, clear and inviting. I gave Sylph's sides a much needed scrub, and accepted the water's invitiation, much easier to attend to the waterline this way; the water is still a bit on the cold side but very refreshing. Towards midday a few puffs of wind were ruffling the anchorage so I thought it time to get underway. We sailed from anchor and I was optimistic that on such a sunny still day that a sea breeze was sure to kick in, but, at the moment, we have only a very light breeze from the west and I am thinking perhaps we should have stayed at anchor. Not to worry, some wind will come, and if I had stayed at anchor I would have only felt guilty. There is enough breeze to fill the sails, haven't heard a slat for a while, and we are making two and a bit knots in the right direction.
All is well.
Tuna in brine is good, tuna in oil is inedible! Why you humans ruin perfectly good food in such an infinite multiplicity of ways is beyond me.
Well I have been doing a lot of research lately for my next book, and am feeling rather weary, so time for a rest, as opposed to data collection, there is quite a big difference you know . zzzzzzzzzz.