6 days and 6 hours sailing, we arrived on the island of Sal, the
northeaternmost island of the Cape Verdian islands group. Cabo Verde
belongs with the Azores, Madeira and the Canaries to the Atlantic islands,
of which is determined that they - however miles apart - once belonged to
the same piece of earth. But that was millions of years ago, although
these islands show similarities concerning flora and micro-climatological
circumstances. Like Porto Santo that is located NE of Madeira and is as
barren as Madeira is lush and green, and the barren Lanzarote situated to
the NE of the other, far greener Canary islands, Sal is a piece of barren
soil as well. The island consists of some vulcanic mountains and a lot of
sand and stones. We are anchored in the bay of Porto da Palmeira, a
village with some 500 inhabitants. Nine streets and that's it. It is quiet
simply because there is nothing to do. A school, a mini supermarket, a
groceries market (1 outlet), two restaurants and on the quay a small bar
“type kiosko” where the local youngsters are hanging around.
can get fresh water in the fontenario. Free for the locals, yachties have
to pay a few pennies. PHOTO
to Morocco, Cabo Verde is really black Africa. Morocco was of course
overtaken by the Arabs and islam, but over here you see negroes having fun.
No suppressed veiled women, although 16 year old girls carry a baby on
their hip - so it is still the men who are in charge.
Clearing customs is a formality, we had to pay 1 euro and received both a
stamp in our passport and that was all. An attitude which we had not
expected from a country that was only recently a Portuguese colony.
Fiddlesticks is anchored next to us and after one day of rest and
diving to the anchor (to check of it is holding okay), we took the bus to the larger village of Santa Maria
on the southside of the island.
Maria owns a historic and
seriously decayed pontoon dating from the 19th century. PHOTO
was here that slaves coming from Senegal were
brought ashore to get treatment for the lice they carried, before
they had to board again to resume their trip to Brasil. A disgusting idea.
These days, the pontoon is only used as a meeting point, where fishermen
sell their fish.
People here are focused on how they look. They don't seem very interested
in buying healthy food, but they spend a lot of money on clothes. Boys
are doing push ups on the beach, girls have their hair dressed with
beautiful decorations, wear the latest jeans fashion with colourful tops
that look appalling on their deep brown skin. The houses and pubs are very
colourful as well, with walls painted in many colours and often carrying
funny pictures. PHOTO
The Cape-Verdian people just love colour and use their creativity to make
their town and home into a nice place. The music adds to this, as you hear
relaxed, rhythmic music everywhere. People live outdoors and especially by
the end of the day the streets are crowded with people. PHOTO
Africa is alive!