Sunday 1st June 2014
We had every intention of casting our mooring lines this morning, and easing out to an anchorage for lunch, and then coming back up the ria to ViaNova and a new place. We even got up at a reasonable time, showered, and had breakfast. It was only when we were walking into town to buy some bread for lunch that somehow the conversation turned into ‘shall we stay today too… and do that lazy Sunday lunch thing that gets mentioned in the Galicia guide?’ There was barely a cloud in the sky, there was a good sailing breeze and here we were talking about another day in the same port. What was wrong?
We bought a ‘barras centeno’ from the bakery, and Pete suggested that we go and have coffee and think about it. We ended up in a busy little cafe with great WiFi (the name of the place has already gone), so we downloaded the weather, and checked out recommendations for lunch. It would seem that we have a few days of weather like this, until it all goes a bit wonky again, so it’s not that we’re using up all our good sailing days – although the wind might be less, but there was a cracking sea breeze this afternoon. We decided that we’d be Spanish, and let the day ebb and flow around lunch, taking a walk along the front first.
We had to go back to the boat, to deposit the bread and apply liberal amounts of sunscreen. Early on the breeze had felt cool, and there are few locals wearing anything resembling summer clothes – so we really stand out, inappropriately attired for summer and pasty by comparison. We walked away from the port, along the promenade behind the town’s beach. It was heading towards low tide, so the expanse of yellow sand was greater. The only people on the beach were the odd dog walker and as we neared a little headland, men on the beach foraging for shellfish of some kind – digging into the sand. We saw a few people with quite a bounty.
The promenade ends to become a boardwalk around the head of what must be a stream that runs into the sea, which you meander around, before it joins a pavement along a small road. We chose to end our walk here, detouring into the churchyard, where there were people tending the headstones and memorials on the cemetery walls. We picked our way through the tombstones lying like fallen matchsticks, Pete spotting a sizeable green lizard, trying to pretend that he wasn’t there – only he’d forgotten to tuck in his fat green tail! When he thought we’d passed, I snuck back a little bit to catch him sunbathing.
We clambered down on to the rocks, and scrambled (slight exaggeration, but any other word escapes me), between them and sandy pockets, looking at the sea life in the rock pools. So many mussels, clams and the odd crab. All fair game for the pot here, so it would seem. We couldn’t walk any further, without going up along the road, which didn’t seem as nice, so we turned back towards Pobra, not walking very quickly. By the time that we’d come back, there were a few more people on the beach, and for the first time, people – women – lying out in the sun. Perhaps summer arrived today? Flaming June! We stopped at the same cafe to avail ourselves of the WiFi, and a beer, and download the paper (if we were going to “do” Sunday, then surely that must involve a paper?)
We went back to the boat, ostensibly to put our feet up, but really to change for lunch (to look less like tourists). The timing of lunch was a tricky one – the guide book says that it can be an all afternoon affair, from about 14:00, so we aimed for this. We’d set our target as Restaurant Castelo (fairly mentioned in TripAdvisor, but also with Michelin Guide listings), and it met the criteria – it looked interesting, in a rustic way, and it was busy. Not with people having a big lunch, so it seemed, but lots of tapas came past our table. The menu wasn’t extensive, but gave plenty of choice. Rather untypically, we had white wine, the local albarino grape (slighty fruity, but dry, nice), Spanish would have red, typically. We pooled our first courses, me opting for the Galician Octopus (as we’d had the other day, wonderful) and Pete opted for an ensalata of sardines – on soft, plump red peppers with the obligatory sliced onions. What a feast! But we had more… Pete had “secret pork”, cooked rare, and I opted for grilled cod. My word! What a lot of food. We’re still not sure what cut of pork Pete had, but it was thin, and quickly cooked, but so moist. I think it’s a bit like a feather steak on a cow, wherever that cut is from. I had a massive slab of cod, fragrant and melt-in-the mouth. But it was the potatoes that they were served on – just delicious. Moist, flavours of olive oil, peppers, onions. They were like a Spanish equivalent of lyonnaise – and something I shall be trying to bring to the Whinchat kitchen; I think the Remoska will do them beautifully, with a couple of filets of white fish for the last 10 minutes, with all the fish juices sinking into the potatoes. Next fish market we find, I shall be braver! A coffee was all that we could do to round of the meal, before we waddled back to the boat to lie groaning in the scarf-shade rigged on deck. The teak decks are baking hot, almost to the point of scalding. It certainly makes you hop from one foot to another – just think what it does to your skin!!! The sun, I mean!
And so the rest of the day has drifted by, and we’ve done very good impressions of ‘siesta’, me more literally taking a wee nap. It’s now coming up to 21:00, and we’re vaguely thinking about having some bread and the iberico jamon we bought in Noya the other day. Hopefully the boat will cool down before it’s sleep time – 27 degrees below deck. For sure we will move tomorrow, I think to the next ria down. I’ll wait until orders are issued in the morning, but we hope to be in Baion in advance of the mucky weather coming in at the end of the week!
Fat green lizard bakes,
like the chicos on the beach.
Turn: must toast both sides.