Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Of Saints and Fish

A complicated day lies ahead of us. Early in the morning we pull into Villa Garcia, already on the Spanish side of the Iberian Peninsula. In the first light of the day more than a hundred of our guests are getting off and into the busses bound for a destination of world fame - Santiago de Compostela, terminal leg of the Way of St. James, location of the tomb of the apostle Jakobus and place of pilgrimage for hundreds of thousands of people. Established as early as in the 11th century, the itinerary developed into a network spanning several countries in Europe. But they all end here, and so the excitement is great among those who finally get to see it.
As soon as the busses are gone, FRAM turns around and southwest again, in order to leave the Rio de Arousa, only to see a spectacular sight:
In this fish-eats-fish, man-eats-fish world, an abundance of resources is always welcome, and the mouth of the Rio de Arousa is swarming with fish and mussels. So we make our way in-between an armada of slender boats that is rocking quietly in the morning haze, waiting for the catch.
Later on, something strange happens - the ship is moving... A slight swell is noticeable, enough to make some of the remaining folks - well, considerate about food. You have to earn your sea-legs, but normally that happens quite fast.

Like a reward for the inconvenience the sun comes up and travels with us all the way to A Coruña in northern Spain, a very scenic town with an unmistakable charm, the architecture is a strange mix of baroque, Jugendstil and unique facades. All that very cosy, very warm in the pinkish hue of sunset.

Suddenly the ship is full again - the excursion to Santiago is back. Just in time to enjoy a delicious BBQ in the day's last sun on deck 7. They are telling stories about the magic of the  place, about religious dances, good food and powerful light. What a splendid end of another long day!
Tomorrow we will be out at sea, no land, but certainly a few waves: We have to cross the Bay of Biskay in order to get to France. So, get ready for the ride!