Sailing Long Distances

Spanish Rias

Here is a crazy, weird sentence; we cast off! Ducks didn’t accompany us across the Bay of Cadíz, but a huge Motor yacht of 60 m length. A pilot got off-board, the yacht moved slowly on and dropped the anchor. It was amazing to see how this large vessel worked in the sea. The swell was about 1,5 m.
One of the advantages of Rota is a compact city, with a lot of business close by. We strolled around and made our way to the industrial side. Not exactly a tourist attraction, but who cares when more important things are waiting for a solution. This led us to the first big ria, more precisely a Ferreteria, a hardware store, where we bought a 20m measure band to get the rig’s data. The chap behind the counter spoke English and stated proudly that he had worked with hotels in Germany, the UK, Holland, Switzerland, France, and Italy. Multilingual people like him are hard to find in Cadíz, so I grabbed the opportunity and asked for a carpenter who sells marine plywood. He said one of his colleagues used to be in shipbuilding and gave me an address close by. This information needed to be proved rightaway to the next ria, a carpinteria. Here we met Carolina, who brought in her ten words of English, plus my ten of Spanish, made twenty. You might think the two of us chatted all afternoon. Too bad it wasn’t, yet we got along pretty soon. The wood should be delivered by truck the next day. In the end, it was three days later, the principle of manana. Walking back to the boat we noticed an enormous number of rias; the important cevezeria, followed by a Panaderia, Inmobilaria, Pinturia, Peluqeria, Carneteria, Pizzeria, Cafeteria, Pescaderia, Heladeria, Barberia, Papeleria, Churretería, Trattoria, Fruteria, Tapicería, Asesoria, Pasteleria, Copistería, Funeraria, Droguería, Fontanaria, Candelaria, Tia Maria.
Taking all the mast dimensions, boom, and the other stuff took half a day since we had to be sure it’s correct. Emails between sail makers flew back and forth, and new ideas came up. On the side, we learned, a sail of 25 Kg transported from Germany to the Canaries will be close to 500 Euro shipping costs due to the pandemic and limited transport capabilities. When all was said and done, we ordered two new sails to replace the 24-year-old Genoa and 22-year-old mainsail. Our sailing budget refused the idea immediately, but Beate and I have two votes, therefore a qualified majority. You see, the principles of democracy work on the boat as well.