Just for a change, it was a bit overcast in Luz yesterday, with intermittent sun. I guess that was probably a bit of a disappointment for the early morning arrivals who were disembarking at the Ocean Club around 8AM as I was walking past. Never mind, today is a perfect day with just a hint of hazy cloud to tone down the sun. Visitors, please beware sunburn today!
Back to yesterday. I was on-site before the Brit police-on-the ground had arrived. The local police (GNR) had its 24×7 site guards deployed, of course. In the middle of the search area it looked like half-a-dozen plain clothes bods were having a discussion, possibly about what the uniformed police should do that day.
The rest of Luz is carrying on much as normal. The site being searched is next to one of the main roads into Luz, and because of the search there was more (very slow rubbernecking) traffic on it than usual. What were the other key differences? There were a lot more low-level aircraft passes than standard. It has gone from maybe one every 3 weeks to 3 or more per day. Drones, helicopters, light aircraft, jets, the lot. And of course the media. Under the obligation to file a news summary one or twice a day, and I can see on-line that more than one that is instructing us how we should think about this invasion.
However, in front of the church the early morning walkers were descending the road to the promenade. The joggers were red-faced with exertion, but enjoying the cooler temperatures before the heat of the day. A walk on a pristine beach under azure sky is a delight, and the folks here were up shortly after dawn to tuck into this treat. Then there were the dog walkers, including those on the beach. The signs say ‘no dogs except guide dogs’ on the beach, but it was early morning, lots of fun for the dogs on the sand, and the owners were socialising with other dog-owners, just as normal.
Perhaps the dogs and dog-walkers were less appreciated by the early-morning cleaners, whose job it was to scour the promenade and the whole of the beach to ensure it was pristine for the tourists. Just as it is every morning.
All this before 8AM and the commercial activity had already started. Most of the breakfast places advertise they are open from 8:30AM but the Lazuli, overlooking the beach, had proprietors in before 8, cleaning up ready for early trade.
On the high street and on the road to Burgau (a village shortly to the west of Luz) the busses were already running. After all, the workers had to get to their place of work somehow, and that often involves public transport.
In summary, Luz was a hive of activity before the British uniformed officers turned up to start searching yesterday.
What did those early-morning arrivals have to look forward to yesterday? The weather wasn’t great, with the first cloudy day in 30. But it was still very warm. The beach was pristine. There were lots of things for the kids to do. When it comes to food, there was everything from a full-English breakfast (with all the brand names you’d recognise), through continental breakfast, light lunches, and for dinner, take your pick. English (lots)? Portuguese (lots)? Choice of 3 Italian restaurants. Choice of 3 Indian restaurants. How about South African? Or Brazilian?
Fancy watching the motor racing on a giant screen? How about England v Honduras? If sport is not your cup of tea, let’s see, last night was disco night in Rio’s @ #2. Just one of a dozen alternative attractions specialising in a fun holiday.
Now it is Sunday, 8th June 2014 at 11AM and a perfect azure sky is pierced by a fierce sun. Fortunately, it looks like the breeze has just started, which will keep temperatures bearable.
I am heading off to check on the search for Madeleine, but life will continue irrespective. Today, for the holiday-makers, it is whether they enjoy the beach and good food. For me, it is about Rosberg v Hamilton. I may go down into one of several taverns showing it live on a giant screen, and enjoy a bite. On the other hand, I may stay in, watch it on my own giant screen, and since I am a decent cook, enjoy some delicious home-cooking.
The sun is shining in Luz.