Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Wednesday, October 17, 2012 – Vigo, Spain

Distance from Gijon to Vigo, Spain: 298 Nautical Miles

Ship position at Vigo (Small)

Local Information:  Vigo is situated on the slopes of Monte del Castro in the northwestern Spanish province of Galicia.  The region was settled by the Celts in the 6th century BC.  The area was ruled by the Romans, Visigoths, and Moors of Africa (in 730 AD).  The Moors were finally defeated by King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella in 1492 and Spain reunited by the Catholic Monarchs.  Vigo Bay is one of the largest in the world (3 by 20 miles) and can deal with a lot of ships.

Note:  Nobody speaks English in this part of Spain – not even the Security Personnel working the Cruise Ship Terminal.  Tip:  Ask for Wee Fee (WiFi).

A dreary day in Vigo, Spain…

Vigo Bay from Ship (Small) Vigo Bay 2 (Small) Vigo bay and bridge (Small)

Above: Vigo Bay from the Reflection (note bridge in bottom picture)

Vigo tour buses ready to go (Small)

Tour buses ready to go

There were some very interesting statues in the Square in front of the Maritime Building.  The guy with the suitcase below may have looked too long at another passenger with snakes for hair.

Statue near Vigo Ship Terminal (Small)

I don’t know if the sculpture below has a name but I would call it “Ouch” – kissing the cement must hurt.

Statue in Port Courtyard - OUCH (Small)

Reflection docked near town (Small) 

Celebrity Reflection docked in Vigo

Vigo is built on hills (as I would soon find out) as demonstrated below.

Vigo built on hills (Small)

Hilly Vigo, Spain

What a night…our mysterious noise returned with a vengeance.  Keeping Ellen up most of the night and waking me up at 4 AM or so.  After that, the noise appeared in a 10 minute cycle until morning.  I called maintenance to come an investigate – our poltergeist is too smart for that and hushed up for him but I had recorded it on my phone and played it for the maintenance.  He said he would get a ladder and check it our further today.  Low expectations on this one.

Ellen is on an all day tour today and I am going to explore the city of Vigo.  This is an easier task here since the ship is docked right in the town.  On the down side, the city is built on the slope of a hill so there is a lot of climbing.  Besides being a picturesque yet modern city, there were also some very upscale Ethestica Salons scattered throughout the city.  These are places that do skin treatments, tanning, beauty stuff, and also therapeutic massage.  I found one such place that charged 32 Euros for an hour massage (I found another place for 30 Euros but the former had someone who spoke English). 

I scheduled for 1:15 PM.  In between, I looked for WiFi. I even had a cup of Cafe Americano and a biscuit so I could use the places WiFi – even though I had the password, I couldn’t connect.  I manage to stumble onto free WiFi from a library back down near the water.  Looking around, I could find no library.  They either had a very strong signal or an unmarked building.  I checked e-mail, stock prices, and got in a little chat with the family.

As I headed back up the hill to the Salon, I heard very loud crowd noises and noticed that the street was blocked off my police cars.  As I got a bit closer, I saw the source of the noise – a massive student demonstration (the students were about 20 across and the line was more than two blocks long – more than a thousand kids marching and shouting).  I asked one of the staff at the Salon what was going on and she didn’t know or couldn’t explain it to me.

Massive Student Demonstration (Small) student demonstation 2 (Small)

Students on the March

The massage was terrific – a very high tech room – almost hospital clean (actually not a good example – maybe OR clean).  The place did give off a medical vibe. 

I forgot to mention that it rained constantly during my trek through the city.  My waterproof jacket was soaked as was everything else.  Fortunately, it wasn’t cold like Paris so not as uncomfortable. 

On my way back to the ship, I stopped again near the Hotel Vigo (the site of my invisible WiFi source) and wound up chatting with family back home and my wife who was on line at the same time.  I tried a Skype Call but the signal was weak and cut out after a few words.  It was still nice to hear a familiar voice from thousands of miles away.

The Hotel Vigo is located next to a very nice city park (below).

Statue near waterfront Vigo (Small) Statue and Flowers park near Hotel Vigo (Small)

It’s 4:20 PM now and I am drying off on the ship.

Ellen was on tour today - “Santiago de Compostela”.  The site is known for its famous Cathedral and is said to contain the remains (ashes) of St. James (after his dramatic demise in Judea).  It was the third most important pilgrimage site during the Middle Ages (behind Rome and Jerusalem).. 

  Santiago de Compostela (Small)

 Santiago de Compostela 3 (Small)

Cathedral Santiago de Compostela

 At lunch in Vigo (Small)

Lunch on Tour in Vigo

The sail Away from Vigo was dreary but dramatic.

Sail Away Vigo 5 (Small)Sail Away Vigo (Small) Sail Away Vigo 1 (Small) Sail Away Vigo  2 (Small)

We did not go to Showtime tonight – David Klinkenberg (violinist) – just too tired.

Pedometer: 11,860 steps; 5.62 miles; 581 calories.

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