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Attacked by sea devils…

The day started normally enough with our leading man, well the only man, the only person actually – ok, it is a low budget production…anyway don’t distract me… casting off in pitch black and crawling out of Portosin, en route, or as we sea dogs say “towards” Villanova. Having been holed up in Portosin for an extra day due to thick fog, it was a relief to slip out and down the Ria Muros with a bright moon and stars to guide me. As has become my custom, I kept looking back so that I could picture how to navigate back if any thing unexpected happened like spilling my porridge on the Raymarine chart plotter, or crossing some magnetic anomaly that gave the GPS a seizure – yes, you may mock, but there are such anomalies down the Spanish and Portuguese coasts. Portosin, like Camarinas, had been another eye opener and if I was ever to come back along this coast this would definitely be on my list for a few days at anchor or in the marina. Very picturesque.

But the surprise was the wind, it too was up the Ria – eventually someone had to make that joke. It was from the North – hurray! I unfurled the full genoa – on a Moody 44 that is a giant sail at the front – and broad reached away – engine off – peace at last. A classic day. Blue sea, blue sky, and a gentle breeze. I had nothing to do except play with my toys. First the camera was set with some of the fittings that I had acquired on eBay and brought back with me to Coruna. The heavily cut down video – yes, I have had complaints – is on YouTube and the video page here. Then the fishing rod and fishing reel were unpacked. This all took about an hour, because I managed to get completely tangled up with fishing line. There was something deeply satisfying about not getting a knife out and cutting myself out of the tangles but instead, patiently, obsessively, undoing every tiny knot and twist until the line was free and coiled properly. I cast the line from the rod and placed the rod in the new holder – at the “rear” – ok, enough! – stern of the boat. I then took the second fishing line that was coiled around a handle and tied the handle to the guard wires, letting out around 100m of line. This line had the mackerel hooks, a tuna sized hook, a weight and a “para “something” that makes the line dive down with the forward motion of the boat instead of skipping along the surface.

I waited, practising my 1000 yard stare that fishermen seem to have. Only 30 minutes later – a flash in the pan in fishing terms – the line that was tied on the guard wires gave an almighty jerk. I leapt up – as only someone with rheumatism in one hip on a rolling deck can – and went to investigate. Hauling in the line – I became deeply suspicious, there was very little resistance. As I feared, some demon had eaten the whole lot. All the mackerel lures, para thingy, tuna hook – all gone.  Deflated, I decided to take in the line on the rod too. Disappointed, but relieved to have survived what surely was an attack by a  Great White.

About 30 minutes later – dolphins arrived to cheer me up. Now, I did say that I would not eulogise about dolphins or sunsets in this blog. So, if you are of that disposition, please feel free to check out the video page for a full record – except the part where I fell over on the fore deck in my rush to get a video of the display. I was also glad that I had no lines out at this point. Would a Dolphin be silly enough to be tricked by fishing lines? – I hope not!

As I approached the Ria de Arosa I had a short debate with the crew. Finally, I decided to override any dissenters and ordered the helmsman to keep on sailing – on to Baiona. The wind was Northerly, the sea state was smooth, the sky was clear blue – why not? I could make up the day lost sitting out the fog in Portosin.

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Portosin – Day 1 – fog bound Day 2 – Thicker fog
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Yacht Club En route – Baiona
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Blue on Blue Fish passing by and giving me a hand signal

7 comments to Attacked by sea devils…

  • Gary

    Displaying my usual enviably forensic awareness have just realised there are videos of you to watch!Obviously you’re using blue screen technique and are actually in your back garden as I’m in Spain and there is no fog and I’m only 600 miles from you.Videos very interesting.I will send similar as am about to paint a white wall white and watch it dry.Take care me hearty!

  • Woohoo! Was only mildly wondering when we would get the next installment, Be honest you sooooo want to wax lyrical about the dolphins. 🙂 x Can’t wait for the big fish that got away story xxxx

  • Hannah

    Really enjoying your blog, dad! well done and hope you catch a fish soon. 🙂 xxxx

  • David Altendorff

    Sounds good! Nice to see some Dolphins! I hope you get the knack of the fishing!! Would be a ‘reel’ bonus for you! X

  • Stuart

    Do you think you could do a sailors jig or song to liven the videos up a bit?

  • Rick

    Hi Russ
    Following your blog is improving my geographical knowledge of Spain and I’m looking forward to finding out eventually where the Cape Verde Islands are, home to one of my favourite singers – the late Cesaria Evora.
    Sorry you’re having trouble with your crew. They look a rum lot to me! Carry on carrying on
    Rick

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