The day sail trip around the south of Mallorca went well stopping at Porto Christo and Puerto Petro. The weather stayed benign enough to keep everyone happy. We’ve decided to call it “reverse sailing” with Terry and Liz – we stay in harbour on a nice stiff sailing breeze and venture out when there is no wind and we motor! We found a nice spot just off Marina des Arenal where we anchored for the night and took Terry and Liz to their fuel dock to leave for the airport and us to refuel. We’ll miss the scones on the BBQ and lots of fun and drinks. Another drying out period coming up.
Back just to ourselves again and we went to Cala Portals, a very crowded day tripper place in the greater Palma Bay. One beach is a nude one where mostly German men were standing in the shallows with their bratwurst out. We were hailed by an Australian sounding voice as we went in and it turned out to be a couple we had seen in a bay in Ibiza but hadn’t spoken to as we were leaving that night. Jean Michel ls Aussie/French and Lisa and their little son Xavier live and work in France, in the ski region of Chamonix running a restaurant called La Boomerang! We saw them a few times over the next days as we both went to Palma Nova then over to our marinas in Palma. They are back off to work and we were heading to Lisbon for the third World ARC reunion.
The reunion went really well. Nearly everyone was there and it was interesting to see the children so much older. Only Willow and Kai were there as unfortunately Bluebelle and Columus had exams. We missed last years in London as we were still sailing across the North Atlantic.
Manuela and Luis organised drinks and meals each day and a tour to the Palace Pena in the UNESCO listed area of Sintra. A very dragonish building of many different styles and historical significance, part old Moorish, part old monastery and part palace. I really liked its quirky nature. The main ruler/architect travelled all over the world to incorporate different design styles and to reflect the countries past. Every ceiling is different and the carvings are wonderful, very hard to do justice to here.
After a quick windy look at the most western part of Europe (that we had all sailed past) we headed off to lunch and that was the end of that. It went on so long we all lost the urge to do any more touring so it was back to the hotel for a nap before dinner.
The Fado restaurant we went to that evening was very good in the old Alfarma district. Fado is a particular form of very melancholic Portuguese music – all lost loves, dastardly unsuitable men and angsty women. A bit like their version of our Air Supply – remember the saying that each LP came with a razor blade?! The Alfarma district was preparing for a festival of sardines combined we think with the Lisbon festival of San Antonio. Anyway people had sardine hats on. This is an area where everyone is always out in the tiny narrow streets drinking and eating so I can only imagine what it is like in a festival!
After our farewell lunch on Sunday we had a few extra days partly so we could fit in a skin check with the same doctor we saw last year. (All clear for both). We took ourselves off to the coach museum which was very interesting and the next day had lunch with Peter and Janet (Wayward Wind) who were still in Lisbon too. the hotel we stayed in the Sana Lisboa was very nice with an interesting couple of features – instead of something useful in the bathroom like a hairdryer that stays on or an extractor so you can see in the mirror after a shower, it had an adjustable TV speaker……….at least we weren’t going to miss anything on the Portuguese news.
Back to Palma for a diet and some relaxation! We found that the dinghy had rubbed on the marina wall in some wind one night but luckily the cover I had sewed for the throttle prevented any damage and had stopped it from sticking under the dock. Now I have to repair the cover! Still, better that than a new throttle. After a quick restock shop we headed off to anchor out. Thankfully free after an eye wateringly expensive marina stay in with the super yachts. It was the only place we could get to leave the boat for the Lisbon trip.
Next up is my brother Mark coming from Luxembourg for a four day break from work and we pick up our new gennaker from the sailmakers. This morning in Santa Ponsa an Australian couple and their 3 boys called over to say hi. They bought a catamaran in Turkey 5 years and have been out ever since. I’m sure we’ll see them around again.