Day 277 – 20th April 2011
Cidade Velha – Praia, Santiago, Cabo Verde
06.30 – 10.00am
Arrival – 14° 54’.6 N 23° 30’.2W
Backing out of the tight anchorage, we made slow progress under power towards Praia. There were only 3 yachts anchored in the harbour, one of whom was
Snow Goose a 22’ Bilge Keeler. The skipper 26 year old Daniel had sailed down from England with plans to go to Chile (his homeland). He’d met John in the Canaries.
Tanaka arrived on his ‘ferry boat’ to take us ashore, though we’d already flung Nearby over the side. 50 years of age and hardly a tooth in his head, John invited him aboard for a cool drink. They’d met last year and poor Tanako wasn’t in the least bit interested in the weather. He spoke no English, Spanish or French, just Criole and the language of money (which he understood particularly well). I lowered myself into the flimsy fibreglass vessel, the sides wobbled as they were so thinly laid then sat on the board amidships. With a couple of winds on the string he flicked the motor into action and we bolted off into the harbour. The engine died almost as quickly as it had begun and we drifted further out. Meanwhile John was faffing about with his shoes and rucksack and other things. The engine started and we made it back to Faraway to pick up John. He arranged to tow Nearby to the fuel dock, but the engine stuttered to a stop. We were drifting into the harbour once more and I had images of us towing the boat as we rowed Nearby ashore. Tanaka wound the string around the starter drum of the flywheel about 20 times and still it would not start. Memories of an old lawnmower flooded back and the difficulties starting it caused me to smile. Another whip of the string almost taking my eye out and we were off. Safely tied up at the fuel dock, John and Tanaka spoke the international language of CASH.
A visit to the Port Captain then a taxi into town where I went to the Cyber Café Sofia. It was the centre of the action in town beside the square, but Internet was unavailable. John went off to do his thing and I ordered a coke. The waitress barely looked a me, however had a broad beaming smile for the lone older gentleman at the table next to me! The girls here are very beautiful and walk with poise and grace. They manage to wiggle while they walk and ooze sensuality invoking lustful thoughts in many of the men.
Note to self – Walk slowly, and gracefully.
An old man walked by and said “Are you good?” To which I replied “Yes thank you, very good” and smiled. “Nice tits!” My smile morphed into a snarl.
My hours alone passed too quickly and it was time to row back.
My appetite was poor. I felt slightly depressed that I had no internet and I’d missed a chat with Dan. He was leaving for Fuerteventura on the morrow.
I had a few generous cocktails, read a book then made for the heads before bead. I nearly died – John had his Salami in his hand as he sat at the table reading. I hurriedly closed the door of my wardrobe locker and got into bed.
I did not smell eucalyptus.
Breakfast – Tea and muesli
Lunch – Tea and toast
Dinner – Spaghetti Bolognese
Snacks – Pineapple juice, 2 x bananas, coke, Sprite, galau and 4 x cocktails.