There isn’t much to say about this day at the beach not because it was dull, but because beaches aren’t about idle chatter. They are about exploring, collecting, walking, listening to the crashing Atlantic waves, breathing in the salty air, and just thinking about whatever thoughts come into your consciousness.
So today, at least for the first bit, we did just that. We drove to the coast about 50 kilometers north of Porto through simple beach towns where fireworks still sounded from churches and homes, to Esposende, a fishing village where the river Cavado meets the Atlantic ocean in a peaceful exchange of swirling waters.
The sand was soft and deep. A pile of huge granite boulders sat on the left side. Tiara rested, Elise teased the waves with her toes, and Luci and Arianna explored the caves created by the rocky pile finding forts and secret rooms to call their own, at least for a while. I walked along the narrow stretch of sand where the river and sea meet. This is where the sand glittered with silvery slivers of shale and bright orange stones that remind me of the sugared egg yolks enjoyed here in Portugal.
Hunger brought us to the packed restaurant that sat high on the dune on our same beach where the food was a lot better than other beach-side restaurants we’ve tried. The pizzas and milkshakes were delicious. My fish was, well, the most interesting, and the least impressive. “A” for effort, I suppose. We’d seen it come to nearby tables as we sat reading our menu. It was a large fish, headless, sitting on a plate covered with sauteed onions. The smell was strong, but delicious, and we all thought it taste just the same, but it was fishy and we quickly tired of the onion flavor. Blech. The potatoes were good.
The town appears small and unassuming, but there is class and culture hidden along the narrow streets within. We bought dish towels with hand-embroidered edges from a lady there and in my walk near the church I discovered a bakery/chocolate shop where I bought some nice chocolate covered oranges and a nice little cafe with a cake made from some dark green vegetable and fabulous looking gourmet foods. We left with a bottle of olive oil and a morbid curiosity about this dark green cake colored only naturally from a vegetable with no available English translation.
The girls were playing on a huge playground near the water surrounded by grass. Families with soccer balls covered the lawn. Everyone was outside on another sunny day. They all seemed content, relaxed – spending time together without a worry in the world.
We walked along the boardwalk back to the car slowly. No rush to get back to Felgueiras. It’s beautiful here.