Povoa de Varzim - Trouble at the Fisherman's Festival!

Niord's Big Adventure
Tony Gratton
Sat 15 Jul 2023 23:35
14/07/2023 Povoa - A day of rest
Yesterday we found a local bakery where we were just in time to buy the last of the natas for breakfast. After the shock and awe of shearing yet another coupling bolt, today was a recovery day. We slept in late then made the hike around to the marina office to let them know that we needed to stay on and might need a lift. They put us in touch with the local marine engineering company where we met Sandra who listened to our woes and promised to get her boss onto the case next week (maybe). Back to Niord for lunch, including a couple of glasses of wine then R & R in the afternoon. For Tony this meant several hours of sleep as the rain hammered onto the coachroof. In the evening the rain stopped so we decided to go for a stroll. On the way back we found the best ice-cream parlour in town and treated ourselves to two huge 'copas' (desserts). Back to Niord and time to get the blog up and running...
15/07/2023 Handbags at the Fishermans Festival!
Povoa is to Portugal what Benedorm is to Spain... Not the sort of place you want to get stranded in, but hey, things could be worse. At least they have a 35T hoist here with plenty of space on the hard! Another late start before we could face the day. The first priority was laundry. Luckily we found the two machines free, so loaded them up whilst doing a quick translation of the wash programmes from Portuguese into English! Due to our distance from the 'facilities', since we got here we have been searching for a decent local cafe where we could breakfast and ... We decided to try a local cafe not too far from the marina. Why we did this when it too was at least 3/4 mile from the boat goodness only knows, but there you go. There are very few Brits here, so Tony was eager to practice his Portuguese, and there was no other option in the cafe. He chose a lovely apple pastry, which, when it arrived turned out to be yesterday's ham and congealed cheese inside a kind of croissant. Returning back to the launderette at the marina our two machines were busily churning away, rather like Tony's tummy at this point, and a couple of disgruntled punters were queuing up. They turned out to be French, and during the ensuing wait we learned that they were from Boulogne-sur-Mer and that Jean-Michelle had built his own steel boat. It turned out that they were the next boat down on the pontoon from Niord, and it transpired that they too are heading out to the Caribbean this autumn, but via Senegal.
His stomach still churning, and at least a mile from the facilities, Tony returned to Niord to complete a couple of small jobs while Karen waited for the endless wash programmes to finish. We were thinking of launching the dinghy to make it quicker to get to the facilities, but with a F8 forcast for Sunday we decided it was probably not worth it. As a result we hiked back there for a shower, and back again - great exercise!
Since we arrived, there has been a lot of hustle and bustle ashore just by us with workmen erecting a mega marquee. It turns out that this is the fishermen's festival, with some excellent cooked fish on offer, so having not eaten all day we decided to treat ourselves. After a beer, and an eye-wateringly expensive G & T at the local gastro pub, we presented ourselves at the marquee. This resort is a very popular holiday destination for the Portuguese, and we have hardly heard a word of English spoken. With some trepidation, Tony made the order at the kiosk in his basic Portuguese, only to find that the lady manning it spoke perfect English! There was trouble brewing in the system, however. Having paid for, and received a single  ticket for drinks and food, we were then obliged to split into one of three queues; food, drink or desserts. It was absolute chaos! Karen went for the drinks queue, and Tony for the food with our one ticket between us. People were arriving at the head of both queues, and were having to swap tickets between themselves to get served. Tempers got heated, and in the drinks queue in front of Karen things finally bubbled over. Handbags were drawn, insults were thrown with lots of shouting, and the odd blow, and at one point it looked as if the entire tent was about to join in!! Some were horrified, others amused, and in the fracas Tony made the acquaintance of a very nice chap from Amazonia of all places! Eventually some sense of decorum was restored, and the inevitable happened. Both Tony and Karen arrived at the head of their respective queues with only one ticket between them! Fortunately for us, a nice Portuguese lady managed to grab our ticket back from the food lady so it could be relayed to Karen for the drinks. We both enjoyed beautiful grilled Swordfish with a bottle of Portuguese Rose. There was entertainment of sorts, and Karen managed to get dragged into a Portuguese version of the Conga!! We finished the evening off with another visit to the ice-cream parlour, as Tony has been losing weight, so needed feeding-up!
We have a F8 forecast for tomorrow, so plan to abandon ship and make a trip into Porto!