Coming ashore in a foreign port is strange, as one tries to orientate oneself to the layout , the location of the port offices and immigration and at the same time trying to gauge the temperament of the people one meets, trying to take your line at the dock, offering to sell baseball caps emblazoned with Cape Verde No Stress, and vendors of cowrie she'll bracelets, dolls, necklaces and countless other trinkets. We assiduously locked our outboard to the tender, and led by a lad named Sandro, wandered into the village of Palmeira. Sandro kindly relieved Stuart of the black bin liner of rubbish. And then showed me the police offices. Here we hung around for a couple of hours waiting for the immigration official to stamp our passports, and then eventually made it to a little bar overlooking the harbour for a well deserved beer. This was followed by a fish lunch in a nearby restaurant, at which point I got a taxi to the airport to meet incoming family.
Two hours later they had finally escaped the melded of visa queues and luggage mix ups, and we set off to their accommodation in Villa ao Mar at the southern tip of the island. I must say that I was impressed with the beachside apartment and the little town itself was most congenial and not overdeveloped. I would certainly come here again for a winter beach break.
I stayed the night, while Mark guarded the boat, and then the next day everyone Trekker to Palmeira for lunch before Mark and I set off for Our next rendezvous in Mindelo.
The wind was now a full gale with 40 knots raising sand into the air. Mark had put a rope snubber on the anchor chain to stop it snatching, but it had snapped. He dived successfully to pick up the hook and severed line before we set off.
I'm now on watch at 23:00 halfway across the 70+ miles to Sao Nicolau. The wind is still a full gale blowing 35-45 knots and the seas are large. Under Genoa alone we are making 8.5 - 11.5 knots. Once dawn breaks we aim to explore a new island and then push on the remaining 70 miles to Mindelo.