Christmas in the Cap Verdes

Mindelo-bayIt’s been more than a week now that we’ve arrived after a straining passage in the lovely bay of Mindelo on the island Sao Vincente, Cape Verde. Here the cobbled streets are crowded with a cheerful crowd of locals mixed with a bunch of often slightly forlorn looking tourists, most of them sailors. The weather is much more benign than in The Gambia, temperatures seldom exceeding 30 degrees, and the eternal trade winds blowing constantly from North-East make even the higher temperatures very comfortable. Here we also find quite well-Christmas-starstocked super markets, wireless internet in the marina, bakeries with yummy pastries for breakfast and busy fish-markets with a variety of fresh local fish – in short, it all feels very civilized and laid back.

As for Christmas: the plan was to have lots and lots of prawns with other snacks for Christmas lunch, and then a big roast for dinner. As it turned out, they only had a two kg pack of frozen green prawns for sale. Surprisingly lots and lots and LOTS of prawns for lunch was too much for the two of us – even though Patrick kept insisting that once he ate 1.8 kg of steaks all by himself. Well, Christmas lunch was extended to Christmas-LunchChristmas dinner: prawns fried in garlic butter are yummy too! And Boxing Day saw a brilliant roast à la Lewis, delicious!

Although we had to rest for a couple of days afterwards to digest all these goodies, we’re now busy getting ready for the Atlantic crossing. prawn-plethoraThere are a lot of smaller repairs and some big ones to be done, entry requirements for the Caribbean to be checked (having a dog on board does not make things any easier), and of course the island wants to be explored too! We didn’t get much of a chance yet to explore the barren hills around Mindelo, but hopefully we’ll go for an end-of-the-year hike soon to celebrate the completion of one of the most eventful years either of us has ever seen.

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