The marina at heart


“The ocean is my entire life, and this harbour my other home”, says Henri Pelagahe, one of the characters of Anglet’s marina, which is managed by the Côte Basque – Adour Conurbation. He has berthed his boats here since 1978, including his “six-meter-fifty boat, entirely refurbished”, which is moored at the farthest pontoon. The boat is called “askena”, meaning “the last” in Basque, but its owner will not hear about “a last outing”: “I need the ocean to be happy, going out at sea is a vital need, even more so now that I have retired.”

Henri Pelagahe, now aged 70, has lived his entire life out on the waves. Originally from Biarritz, he first worked for the Navy, then was a deap-sea diver before becoming a fisherman in Saint-Jean de Luz and Anglet. Now, like other passionate amateur yachtsman, he regularly sails out for sheer pleasure. He has become a fixture of the marina and can recall a number of anecdotes, including some tough memories of the storm that “caused serious damage” during the winter of 2013 (1): “We witnessed a heart-warming show of support, but we also understood how powerful nature could be…” An amateur yachtsman association even asked him to give a reminder of mooring techniques: “These simple actions take on their full meaning during such events. If I can be of any help…”

(1) The Côte Basque – Adour Conurbation fixed the damage in 2014.

Interview in the November 2015 issue of the magazine of the Agglomération Côte Basque – Adour :