Porto Colon (2)

Red Skies
David Alexander
Thu 2 Jun 2011 18:15
Tuesday 31st May.   Yesterday saw our first rain since Valencia on 8th May and as more wind and rain are predicted, we are staying on our mooring buoy for a few days. We have put the outboard on the dinghy now, as the water is getting choppy for rowing. Also, we have found another dinghy park, which is further away but more boat friendly than the nearest one, which has a rough stone quay and underlying rocks.
We have a good shower block on shore here, but it has the energy-saving device of motion-activated lights. This is fine, except the time switch is measured in seconds and the sensors are set close to the ceiling. You can imagine Alison's performance in mid-shower (or whatever) when she is plunged into darkness. This involves either standing on the loo seat and waving frantically in the direction of the sensor or running in and out of the shower in mid shampoo to bring up the lights.
Wednesday 1st June.   Well, it definitely looks like we might be here some time. Gales Force 7-8 are forecast for the region for a few days and this morning we had Force 5 with gusts of 6 in our sheltered mooring. Despite being owned by the Port Authority, the buoys here have seen better days and, in view of the forecast, D swam down to inspect the rising chain and the connections we had made to a rope loop attached to it and all seemed fine. However, 'Action Stations' were called this morning when, on inspection, D found this line no longer attached to the riser and we were only being held by our back-up line to the mooring ring on top of the buoy (somewhat rusted and a likely candidate to act as a saw towards our line). The dinghy was towed forward into what was then a very choppy sea and with soakings and expletives D first managed to get a makeshift line on and then a further one attached to a piece of chain on to the buoy. We now have three lines attached - belt, braces and whatever and hope for no more emergencies.
We have a portable steel crane/hoist that we use for lifting the outboard engine on and off the dinghy and, when erected, winds whistle through it with eerie notes, like distant and ethereal pan-pipes. It was quite disturbing at first - was it a siren-call - until we discovered the cause.