Saturday, 24 December 2011

Mindelo, Cape Verde Islands

Hi from Clare, 23rd December 2011
Mindelo is a town of contrasts. Some facilities like the laundry is amongst the best we have seen. There is a brand new Shell Service Station and we have even seen an Audi. On the other hand the buildings are in a state of disrepair and there are many people squatting in the side streets selling fish, vegetables and all kind of merchandise.

The restaurants are very basic but the dinner we had the night we arrived was delicious and very inexpensive. I couldn't help but make a comparison between the mouthwatering menus in Oz and the menus here. At home garden fresh salad, oven baked potatoes and a list of spices to stimulate appetite are mentioned. Here I chose "pork chop and potato' and Andrew had "Stuffed chicken chest". It didn't sound very appetizing but when the meal arrived I had two tender and delicious pork chops cooked in a lovely light spicy sauce and a side dish of baked potato, sweet potato, pumpkin and a fruity cabbage. Andrew's stuffed chicken breast had two side dishes, light buttery rice and a tomato, peppers and onion. We washed this down with a large beer and a full glass of red wine for the total price $24.

Yesterday we spent the best part of the day re establishing the boat to its former glory. The smell I couldn't track down remained after the wet cardboard was removed from the bilge. By this stage I was starting to panic so down on my hands and knees, more sniffing required. It turned out to be stale sea water on the bottom edge of the seat in the saloon. I think there must have been some decaying sea life attached somewhere. A good soaking in Domestos has done the trick.

Today we went for a trip around the island. Eight of us sat on bench seats in the back of a Ute for the five hour trip. The comfort factor was about one step up from sitting on the back of a scooter. We saw a few small fishing and framing villages and went to the top of one of the mountains. The road was narrow and winding with a sheer drop to a "bloody long way down". Some of the crew got out and waited for the rest of us to go to the top. The view at the top would have been break taking had it not been spoilt by a dust storm (as seen in the photos) which has engulfed the island for the past two days.

We wish you a wonderful Christmas, don't eat and drink too much and stay safe.
Love Candy xx
Andrew's Fish

A small (2M) wave

Drying things out

The cruising gang on tour
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