Lock down in Funchal, Madeira


Derek Sims
 

Brilliant, Ernie. You must have had about three lifetimes compared with ours!

Hardly need to say this to you but ...

Stay Sane

Derek

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On 07/05/2020, 12:05 Ernest Bull <ernb32@...> wrote:
On 3 May 2020, at 17:07, timsinc Sinclair < timsinc@...> wrote:

Today we reached Madeira,

I have landed at Madeira twice, and once each at Las Palmas, Ascension, and St Helena, on Union Castle ships between Southampton and Capetown. Also did an emergency stop to take on ballast into Dakar, Senegal.  Once out, twice back. (Flew out to Rhodesiain ’52 with RAF, came back on Athlone Castle in ‘53. Emigrated to S Africa in ’66 on Capetown Castle and returned in ’75 on the Edinburgh Castle.

Madeira never struck me as anything special. The traffic and driving were atrocious. An endless cacophony of squealing brakes, blasting of motor horns, crumpling bodywork and streams of very loud Portuguese invective. I do not think that I ever saw a car there that hadn’t been bashed from all angles.

Ascension was occupied by the US Navy and its Space Agency. My strongest memory was of the ship sailing for over a day through massive islands of floating rubbish that had been dumped in the Atlantic by strings of floating skips loaded with garbage.

St Helena was fantastic. Like one big film set for pirate films. Its most outstanding feature, at the top of an almighty list, including where Napoleon lived and died, is Jacob’s Ladder.
Climbing its 699 steps is one thing, but coming down again is extremely weird and one has to experience it to even start to understand what it is like. The steps were very worn and irregular and we had to look where we were stepping. Looking at our feet all the time, we all got the feeling that we were drunk and leaning backwards at about 45 degrees. We had to keep stopping and turning round to look upwards in order to regain our balance. I see now that the H&SE have since “made improvements”. 

One for your bucket lists although MH hostile, I should imagine. There are only 138Km of single lane highways with a speed limit of 30mph. And steep! Uphill traffic has right of way.
________

ErnB


Ernest Bull
 

On 3 May 2020, at 17:07, timsinc Sinclair <timsinc@...> wrote:

Today we reached Madeira,

I have landed at Madeira twice, and once each at Las Palmas, Ascension, and St Helena, on Union Castle ships between Southampton and Capetown. Also did an emergency stop to take on ballast into Dakar, Senegal.  Once out, twice back. (Flew out to Rhodesiain ’52 with RAF, came back on Athlone Castle in ‘53. Emigrated to S Africa in ’66 on Capetown Castle and returned in ’75 on the Edinburgh Castle.

Madeira never struck me as anything special. The traffic and driving were atrocious. An endless cacophony of squealing brakes, blasting of motor horns, crumpling bodywork and streams of very loud Portuguese invective. I do not think that I ever saw a car there that hadn’t been bashed from all angles.

Ascension was occupied by the US Navy and its Space Agency. My strongest memory was of the ship sailing for over a day through massive islands of floating rubbish that had been dumped in the Atlantic by strings of floating skips loaded with garbage.

St Helena was fantastic. Like one big film set for pirate films. Its most outstanding feature, at the top of an almighty list, including where Napoleon lived and died, is Jacob’s Ladder.
Climbing its 699 steps is one thing, but coming down again is extremely weird and one has to experience it to even start to understand what it is like. The steps were very worn and irregular and we had to look where we were stepping. Looking at our feet all the time, we all got the feeling that we were drunk and leaning backwards at about 45 degrees. We had to keep stopping and turning round to look upwards in order to regain our balance. I see now that the H&SE have since “made improvements”. 

One for your bucket lists although MH hostile, I should imagine. There are only 138Km of single lane highways with a speed limit of 30mph. And steep! Uphill traffic has right of way.
________

ErnB


Derek Sims
 

What a talented writer your great-grandfather was! I felt I was there. It must be marvellous to have that correspondence - the equivalent of a modern motorhomer’s blog.

They still uses sledges in Clovelly to take goods down from the car park at the top. Incidentally, if anyone saw the film of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society at the weekend, that was Clovelly being used as St. Peter Port - not very appropriate really. They also used Bideford as Weymouth and the Hartland point area as the Guernsey coast. Why, I wonder? Economics, I suppose.

Stay Sane

Derek

Sent using the GMX mail app

On 03/05/2020 at 17:07, timsinc Sinclair wrote:

On 03/05/2020, don.madge@gmail.com <don.madge@gmail.com> wrote:
I know its OT but this is the live web cam at the Ritz Cafe in Funchal. I
can highly recommend the place, the prices are very reasonable
.. http://www.theritzmadeira.com/livewebcam.html
Don
Continuing off topic ........

Today we reached Madeira, and it was a great pleasure to have a meal
with the ship at rest. Since we left Dartmouth the fiddles have been
on the table each day. From the sea Madeira looks an island of abrupt
jagged hills - rising 4000 feet, scarred with ravines down which in
the rainy seasons the water rushes and roars - the hillsides are
dotted with houses white and yellow - and the ground is cultivated in
terraces - sugar canes and vines being the principal growths.

We landed for 4 hours. All the streets are paved with boulders set on
end - and these boulders are polished like agates with the bullock
sledges which are the carriages of the island - the steel shod sledges
slip smoothly over the stones and away you go as swiftly as a bullock
cart pulls you.

Beggars are like locusts. Deformed beggars - maimed beggars - bleary
eyed beggars and strong lusty beggars dog one's steps like shadows. If
a child turns a corner and catches sight of an Englishman, down drops
his basket and his hand is held out.

In a letter written by my great grandfather in 1876. Never been there
but brother says the sledges still in operation - but not the beggars!

Tim




Carol Weaver
 

I went twice in 99. First in Jan for a week with youngest daughter. Enjoyed it and knew Duncan was having a difficult time in Nigeria so booked for a fortnight in June for my birthday.  

When we returned in January my answerphone had loads of messages to phone Nigeria!!!  I did to find Duncan had we hijacked!!!  It was a worrying time and he got released basically unharmed except it did affect him for a while and I got kicked out of bed a few times with his nightmares. But due to return his back to back guy phoned and held the phone up to hear gun firing and yelling again. That night he had what we thought was a heart attack. In hospital and due to having company BUPA card they gave him a stent as no medical facilities near him down in the Delta. We did get on holiday though

It’s a very interesting island and worth a visit. Hilly but some lovely restaurants 

Friends have two time shares there and have been going twice a year for around 15 years!  Couldn’t do that. 

Carol

On Sun, 3 May 2020 at 17:07, timsinc Sinclair <timsinc@...> wrote:
On 03/05/2020, don.madge@... <don.madge@...> wrote:
> I know its OT but this is the live web cam at the Ritz Cafe in Funchal. I
> can highly recommend the place, the prices are very reasonable
> .. http://www.theritzmadeira.com/livewebcam.html
> Don

Continuing off topic ........

Today we reached Madeira, and it was a great pleasure to have a meal
with the ship at rest. Since we left Dartmouth the fiddles have been
on the table each day. From the sea Madeira looks an island of abrupt
jagged hills - rising 4000 feet, scarred with ravines down which in
the rainy seasons the water rushes and roars - the hillsides are
dotted with houses white and yellow - and the ground is cultivated in
terraces - sugar canes and vines being the principal growths.

We landed for 4 hours. All the streets are paved with boulders set on
end - and these boulders are polished like agates with the bullock
sledges which are the carriages of the island - the steel shod sledges
slip smoothly over the stones and away you go as swiftly as a bullock
cart pulls you.

Beggars are like locusts. Deformed beggars - maimed beggars - bleary
eyed beggars and strong lusty beggars dog one's steps like shadows. If
a child turns a corner and catches sight of an Englishman, down drops
his basket and his hand is held out.

In a letter written by my great grandfather in 1876. Never been there
but brother says the sledges still in operation - but not the beggars!

Tim



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timsinc Sinclair
 

On 03/05/2020, don.madge@gmail.com <don.madge@gmail.com> wrote:
I know its OT but this is the live web cam at the Ritz Cafe in Funchal. I
can highly recommend the place, the prices are very reasonable
.. http://www.theritzmadeira.com/livewebcam.html
Don
Continuing off topic ........

Today we reached Madeira, and it was a great pleasure to have a meal
with the ship at rest. Since we left Dartmouth the fiddles have been
on the table each day. From the sea Madeira looks an island of abrupt
jagged hills - rising 4000 feet, scarred with ravines down which in
the rainy seasons the water rushes and roars - the hillsides are
dotted with houses white and yellow - and the ground is cultivated in
terraces - sugar canes and vines being the principal growths.

We landed for 4 hours. All the streets are paved with boulders set on
end - and these boulders are polished like agates with the bullock
sledges which are the carriages of the island - the steel shod sledges
slip smoothly over the stones and away you go as swiftly as a bullock
cart pulls you.

Beggars are like locusts. Deformed beggars - maimed beggars - bleary
eyed beggars and strong lusty beggars dog one's steps like shadows. If
a child turns a corner and catches sight of an Englishman, down drops
his basket and his hand is held out.

In a letter written by my great grandfather in 1876. Never been there
but brother says the sledges still in operation - but not the beggars!

Tim


Don Madge
 

I know its OT but this is the live web cam at the Ritz Cafe in Funchal. I can highly recommend the place, the prices are very reasonable
..http://www.theritzmadeira.com/livewebcam.html
Don