Published: April 5th 2009April 5th 2009
Happy Palm Sunday!
Today we are in Mindelo, Cape Verde Islands, which is just off the most western part of the African continent. It is a volcanic island that gets almost no rain, so the dark barren mountains run right down to the sea. Very dramatic. They speak Portugese here so I can't read the billboards and signs. But they drive on the proper side of the road! It seems most of the other places we've been don't! :-)
Since it is Palm Sunday, everything in the town is closed, so we just walked around. The beautiful old buildings are painted gorgeous bright colors and there are lots of really old, but still-in-use wooden fishing boats in the harbor. There isn't a cloud in the sky and the temp is about 75, so perfect touring weather. Not much to see or do here, but the scenery is fantastic.
The two previous days on the ship have been lots of fun with fund raisers for the orphanages in the Philipines and Thailand that the cruise line (Fred. Olsen) sponsors. There was a Country Fayre which was much like the old school fairs we used to have when I was little. Lots of raffles and games, even a fortune teller who said I will soon meet someone tall, dark and handsome. Hmm. We all got rid of the piles of foreign coins we've been stuck with by lining them in a row up and down the main staircase of the ship. I know that sounds silly, but it was much fun to see the line going all the way from 3rd deck to 9 and back again.
There was the annual tug-of-war between various crew teams. Hilarious to see the captain and his officers go up against a team from the engine room...and lose. And the tiny Filipino bar girls up against the Slavic spa attendants. Lots of cheering and screaming and fun for everyone. And a chance for all the crew to be out together with the passengers on the main pool deck -- something that probably only happens once a year. We've grown so fond of these guys...I don't know if I can stand to leave them!
Time for lunch.