After the large swells entering the harbour during the night, we decided to take a look at the conditions outside before we ventured on our way again. Jac and I took the tender across to the harbour wall and clambered up the rusty and crab infested ladder to see what was happening. Whilst still a bit rough, the conditions looked easier than the previous day we decided to give it a try and set off planning to head for Ribadeo. Unlike the previous 2 days the conditions improved as we progressed so we once again altered our plan to bypass Ribadeo and carry on to Viveiro, a distance of 55 miles. We stayed close to a headland which gave us some protection from the Atlantic swell, but steady force 5 wind was forecast to increase to 7 or so later. And indeed it did. As we approached the entrance to the Ria de Viveiro, out of the protection of the land the wind rapidly increased to Force 7 gusting 8 with an accompanying rough sea. Fortunately we didn’t have to endure this for long as we altered our westerly course to southerly as we made our way into the Ria and the shelter of Viveiro Marina. The staff there were outstanding with helpers on the pontoon to assist us in the quite blustery conditions.
We had had a good run with quite a lot of sailing and we even managed to turn off the engine a maintain 6 knots (ish) under sail for a while. However we had to mourn the loss of Jac’s baseball cap, known as the Virgin hat as that was its logo. Jac was relly quite upset at losing her virginity!
29th July 15 Viveiro
One look out of the boat in the morning revealed a grey, drizzly day with very poor visibility, so we weren’t going anywhere. Our next stopping point was A Coruña, round the northwest tip of Spain where we hoped the weather would improve, but it was nearly 60 miles away so the trip would take all day. We needed much better weather than was on offer so we had to wait a bit. Bert had some shopping to do, so Jac and I went to explore the old town which turned out to be a very pretty place with stacks of history. We found a good restaurant, ” The Meson Imperial” in the main pedestrian street which had great octopus, friendly staff and good internet. Wonderful!
30th July 15 Viveiro Again
Woke up to the same weather. We were wondering if we were ever going to see the sun again. The rain in Spain was mainly down our necks! However, everyone we spoke to said that the weather would improve once we reached A Coruña. (Oh yeah!) Bert was planning to stay with us until A Coruña, but the delays meant he had to leave us at Viveiro, which was easier said than done. Viveiro is a little remote and none of the public transport options met our needs. The only solution was to hire a car, but the only car rental company, Multi-Rent, was 15 km out of town. A quick phone call and all was arranged, with the car being delivered to the marina that evening.
Time to relax and another trip into town sightseeing in pouring rain. In the back streets, among other things, we found a little corner where, presumably, a natural spring emerged connected to running taps where the locals were filling plastic water bottles. It seemed to be a substitute for bottled water from the shops. You wouldn’t find that in Milton Keynes.
In the evening we went to collect the car only to be told by the harbour master that the car rental company could not deliver and we would have to go and collect it from their office. Once again the marina staff were superb and the handyman, who turned out to be a qualified molecular biologist, gave me a lift to the office, refusing to take anything for his trouble. At the car rental office I was met by the most miserable, uncooperative bastard that you could hope to encounter and I took possession of a very battered Kia something. Having taken the car back to the marina, we walked into town and had a farewell meal with Bert at the Meson Imperial.
31st July 15 Viveiro Yet Again
Still raining. We set off for A Coruña airport in our rent-a-wreck, a pleasant hour and half drive. After a coffee in the airport café with Bert he caught the flight to Bristol and Jac and I drove to Santiago de Compostela to do some sightseeing. Santiago is a place of Christian pilgrimage and has been for hundreds of years. The old town is crowned by the magnificent cathedral of St James (Saint Iago) who is supposed to be buried there.
After a couple of hours exploring we drove back to Señor Misery at Multi-Rent, who came outside and tried to indicate that a slightly deflated tyre was my fault. He finally said that there would be no charge, but I was so suspicious of him that I phoned the credit card company to ensure that no further bills from Multi-rent would be processed. Took a taxi back to Synergy for a meal of canned sausages and lentils!