Valencia to Oropesa - notes
Valencia to Marjal del Moro (8th June)
Valencia. Always a bit of a culture shock sailing into a big city. So much wealth and at best a questionable quality of experience! Reminded not for the first time of the Mexican fisherman parable (many variants available - for example this one).
Harbour master a nice guy, a down to earth Laser dinghy sailor who takes me along to tag onto the end of a press conference for a girls sailing round the world thing. I'm installed on top of the port office with a nice aerial view of surroundings, but nonetheless feel hemmed in and slip out when an afternoon breeze arrives.
Fingers painful; back less so, now. A few miles up the coast meet kayaker Amadeo, who seems keen for company and is headed to a nature reserve to take pictures of the resident avians. Fate has planned a short day. Always roll with fate. Lots of common terns and red-legged stilts feeding their chicks. As a family man Amadeo only has three and a half minutes to take pictures, before needing to head back to his son's birthday "merienda" tea, to which I am invited. Coca (a savoury pastry), coffee, cake and conversation: Amadeo is an asteroid spotter who has only more recently discovered the beautiful solitude of the sea. I sail back to the nature reserve to camp the night.
Marjal del Moro to Burriana
Easy sailing up the middle part of the Costa Valenciana: continuous beach that reminds me of Jaywick and Clacton. Some industrial - in terms of activity and size - ports to navigate round. I sail with a 'captain hook' hand so that the fingers can rest. Wind just right to reach Burriana, where there is a Windsurf Club that I sailed at in a Formula Windsurfing regatta 13 years ago. Welcome party of Pablo and Angel, Alvaro and multiple Vicentes. Support very welcome and feel batteries recharging.
Burriana to Oropesa
Relaxing start and onto the water late morning. More easy sailing, then another monster port (=artificial headland) to get round in not much wind. Stay offshore so as not to relinquish my upwind position, and eek out enough breeze to reach Oropesa, pumping the last few miles, which must mean fingers are better than they have been. Relieved and grateful to find such a nice 'marinero' working the Sunday evening shift: Kike says no problem to stay in the club nautico, gives me a hand with gear. It is the people that make a place and there are good people here.