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Fog – I don’t like it!
We finally left Biaona and sailed the 53 miles south to Poava de Varzim. It took us 12 hours and the last 2 were in thick thick fog. Very disconcerting, having to completely rely on the GPS that told us we were 500m from the breakwater when you can’t see it! Mind you if they had lit the lighthouse at the end of the breakwater it may of helped.
We came into Varzim along with Gary and Chris on Breezer, another cat, who had also left Biaona behind us (although they arrived 2 mins ahead). Dinner was in down below and heated up tinned chicken with rice. Although it wasn’t raining, the fog was so wet everything was dripping as though it had been pouring.
Fog is obviously an issue around here. Since we arrived, we have seen thick fog for varying amounts of time and at different times of the day. I’m not looking forward to the next leg as it is almost inevitable we will see fog.
We like this marina, extremely friendly, all the usual facilities and on the edge of the town of Poava de Varzim and Vila do Condo. We went for a walk to Varzim and did the old town and the main shopping parts. The shopping part can’t be called the “new bit” as some of the buildings are just as old and many are decorated in typical Portuguese style with the beautiful tiling on the outside. I love these and I bet there is no Barclays Bank ATM in the UK as ornate as this one.
We went to Porto, Portugal’s 2nd city by Metro. The metro was quick and efficient and only cost us €6 each for the metro and buses in Porto for 24 hours. Only 40mins from the centre of Varzim to the centre of Porto. Neil’s blog has a detailed version of our trip www.thegledaproject.com along with photos, some of which I have borrowed again.
Abridged version:- walked downhill a lot to the river (which meant the route back was up!), crossed the river to where they produce Port Wine (NB: turns out it is not produced in Porto and is not a wine), we did a tour and bought a rose port to try (if we ever get the fridge working to chill it, see below). Visited a book store which is purported to be the most beautiful in the world – Livraria Lello. Certainly the most beautiful I have seen.
Most people were visiting to take photos, but I did buy a cookbook which should of been clear it was in American English (lbs, cups and cilantro). It was shrink wrapped so I couldn’t open it. Still OK though.
Neil’s blog post refers to a group of youngsters who helped us find our way back to the metro and yes it did cross my mind that the four of them were going to try and mug us and I wouldn’t get in the lift at the station with them but took the stairs. I think I am just careful, not cynical. But I am most obliged to them. It was very kind and they had actually passed us with our map looking confused and came back to ask if we were OK. Formally I apologise to our good samaritans.
Who knows where our next stop is, fog will determine part of the story.
NB: I am most miffed (putting it lightly) with my Waeco Tropicool TC21 electric cool box. It is less than a year old, was over £150 and is supposed to chill up to -30degrees below ambient temperature. At the moment although the fan is running on the front and it is running on mains power, not through the 12v plug, it is not chilling at all. The butter is almost liquid and the milk turns quickly. The outside temperature hasn’t been over 22degrees so it is not overly hot yet either. Sorting out some sort of refrigeration will be a priority as it is not always easy to buy ice and our work top ice box only keeps it frozen for maximum 24hours. We will probably have to resort to getting a regular 12v cool box just like the one we left behind! A more permanent solution has been added to Neil’s, seemingly endless, list of winter jobs. Luckily we will be somewhere more temperate than Cornwall for him to crack on.