15 Apr Escale à Sete
15 April 2022
Escale à Sete
This week we are in the port of Sète, where the maritime festival ‘Escale à Sète’ is in full swing. This festival, like most maritime festivals, is a wonderful mix of (sailing) ships, rowing boats and other (small) vessels. On the quay it is full of stands with all kinds of nautical things. During this edition, the Netherlands will be honored in Sète. The Netherlands and Dutch ships are therefore also well represented.
We are located in the ‘Dutch village’, together with the ‘Morgenster’ and a number of flat-bottomed boats that have come all the way to the south of France especially for this occasion. For them, that means more than two months of sailing through all kinds of canals and about 220 locks!
Next to us on the side is a fish smokehouse (where we regularly get our lunch), a cheese monger with Dutch cheeses, a blacksmith and Edwin and Liesbeth te Velde. The latter draw attention to their project in Hoorn, where they are building a VOC Ship from waste plastic. They are very driven people who talk with enthusiasm and show why and how they do it. Everywhere in the festival there are different kinds of music groups that can make themselves heard. One even louder than the other. Drum bands, bagpipes, flutists, you name it, they are all there.
But I always find Reinier Sijpkens the most beautiful, nicest and coziest with his ‘Notendop’. A cheerful man in an even more cheerfully painted boat of maybe 2 meters, completely decorated with flowers and attributes, he sits in the back with his trumpets and other wind instruments around him and in the middle is his small barrel organ. He serenades and simply always steals the show.
We are located here along the quay and are open to the public all day long. Hundreds of people pass by every day to view the ship inside and out. In addition, we have receptions on board in the afternoon and evening for companies, sponsors, the municipality, and so on. In short, it has been a busy, but also very pleasant week. So far it has been quite busy. I wonder what this Easter weekend will bring.