Urban streets, sea front. Police surround dead body on beach.
This was new years day. We could not rely on the buses although the local urbano seemed to be running. We took a taxi to Benicarló station and walked 16.2 km back home. Our route went through Benicarló which was still asleep after the revelries the night before. We walked along the sea front in cool sunny weather.
As we entered Vinarós, we passed a small bay with about 20 policemen keeping people away from the shore line. There was a body, probably female, lying face down on the beach with waves still lapping around her head. Presumably she had been washed up by the tide. If the Spanish partying style is anything like the British, it will have been a drunken reveler from the night before who decided a swim would be a good idea. Maybe she could not face 2009 and threw herself off the harbour wall nearby. Perhaps it was a freak accident. A colleague of Neil's died after he had a stroke while canoeing in the sea. We will probably never find out her story.
The rest of the walk was pleasant enough but our mood was subdued.
Today there are virtually no trains until the afternoon. On our return by car we have been into Vinarós a couple of times to get bus times but buses too are infrequent and few go beyond Vinarós. We had intended to go to Les Cases today but decide now to get a taxi to Benicarló and just walk back to Vinarós. I ask Neil if he is ready for me to phone. I hate phoning and need to psych myself up to do it. He says no he isn't ready. About ten minutes later he is standing with the front door open with his rucksack on. You can phone now he says. It freezing with the door open so I retreat to my room and shut the door. My first attempt results in "The phone is turned off" message. The second is successful and a taxi is arranged to arrive in ten minutes.
We go outside to wait for it. I had already texted Ian to wish him a happy new year. He wasn't pleased because by mistake I sent it to the land-line and it made a noise at 8 am. Having been up for three hours I couldn't see the problem. We also phoned Mini at about 9 am GMT.
Today our walk is agricultural once more. We pass fields of giant cauliflowers. Near the sea we see two little girls engrossed playing with stones in a pool. Once again, we see huge amounts of sand washed up onto the roads and paths near the coastline (Add we earlier saw buggers clearing this after the tidal surge). In Vinarós itself we see a dead body washed up on the beach. We think at first it is an inflatable joke woman as it is very bloated but this would not explain two police vehicles and large numbers of policemen everywhere. We don't linger as many others are doing but continue our walk slightly subdued. At the harbour beyond, we have a break and see a cormorant drying its wings. Neil gets a really good picture of it. It is sharing its breakwater quite amicably with a black-backed gull. The sea is marejol and pale teal colour.