And... we're still in Ponta Delgada. It's just so outrageously nice here we haven't got the heart to move on yet.
We've been journeying around the island, visiting friends, old and new, enjoying being warm.
Yesterday we bestirred ourselves early to go squid fishing with friends in Vila Franca. Actually, we should have been a few hours earlier if we really wanted to fish seriously but one must be realistic about these things.
The boat is a modern build to the traditional island style, with a lateen rig, but there wasn't any wind to speak of so the old Volvo Penta did the work while the sailing rig stayed behind in the harbour. Marco comes from a fishing family, so he knows his stuff and has the right gear. Squid are found at the bottom, in depths of at least 200 metres and the lures are lowered down on a steel line from a drum mounted at the side of the boat. You then jig the lure, which looks more or less like a small fish with two rows of sharp spikes at the tail end, up and down a few feet until you feel something grab ahold of it and then the long reeling commences.
Early as it was, by our standards, we were really a bit late for peak squid fishing time and found the pros heading home when we reached the fishing ground. As a result, we only caught the one lula but we didn't leave it at that and managed to pick up a red grouper on the way back to the harbour. Squid and grouper together made a very tasty stew.
|It's tough, but somebody has to do it.|
|The iron-rich spring-fed stream at Lombadas, where delicious |
sparkling mineral water flows straight from the ground.
|Marco and Marcia getting the boat ready to go out. |
Sonja sensibly applying sun lotion.
|Success! Captain Marco and a denizen of the deep.|
|A well-mannered squid. No ink was sprayed on this occasion.|
|Catch of the day. Okay, they're no whoppers, |
but you should have seen the ones that got away.