It seems somehow fitting that the first and last blog posts of 2009 should both be the same place – les Plages de Vitricella.
It was here in April that I was feeling quite smug for capturing what I considered to be the best photo I’d taken of Corsica, but I think the photos I took today are perhaps even better. Mind you, after taking more than 3,000 shots in 2009, I’ve had plenty of practice and the family are now considering surgery to have the camera removed from my hand!
Yesterday we had what is known as a ‘mer d’huile’. Despite the warmth, the sky was covered and there was no wind at all so the sea looked as smooth as oil with hardly a ripple. Today however, the blue sky was back and the sea looked more like a lagoon.
This section of coastline is quite rugged so a little bit of ‘escalade’ is required to get to the prettiest coves. It wasn’t long before I’d managed to get my flip-flop (and the attached foot) stuck, so I decided to bite the bullet and walk through the water instead. I expected the water to be freezing cold, but actually it wasn’t bad at all.
I found myself a beautiful spot and although it was hot enough to sunbathe, this section of beach is a treasure trove of shells, and particularly sea snail shells (try saying that after too many glasses of Muscat!). There is one particular shell that I come across all the time but I’ve got no idea what crustacean it comes from – can anyone enlighten me?
I sat on the rocks with my feet in the water and reminded myself how lucky I am to live in such a beautiful place. The sunlight dancing over the water made it look like the seabed was covered in tiny specks of gold, and rocks looked like they were made of jelly where the waves were gently swirling around them.
The sun was beating down so as the sea was so calm, I actually braved a dip! I think this is probably the latest I have swum in the sea in Corsica, but not bad for late November, eh? There were so many fish they ended up surrounding me and I couldn’t help thinking that it was shame that Guillaume wasn’t there with his net and his goggles because I could have made a delicious ‘grillade’ for supper!
The shape of the headland meant that by about 3pm, the sun had moved slightly out of sight so I decided to make my way back past the steps to the Plage de Marinca and beyond.
This is a beautiful stretch of beach and in the summer is used almost exclusively by the guests of the hotel, but today it was deserted. I spotted some gorgeous prickly pears backing the beach and just had to stop for a photo.
Sadly, I was so busy trying not to step on the fallen leaves on the sand, that I brushed my hand on another and ended up with so many spines in my hand that I could have masqueraded as a hedgehog!! It’s a good job the lady from the pharmacy gave me some training for removing spines after the chestnut incident at Aullène.
The beach here is backed by maquis which gave the water a greenish tint. I soon found myself back in the shallow waters and this time I was joined by a pointy electric blue fish that looked like a miniature swordfish. I wish I’d been quick enough to catch him on film.
So, as the sun started to sink behind the hills, I made my way back to the car, full of ideas for next years excursions…