May 3rd Monday.

May3rd Monday.
Not the best nights sleep. There is a main road 200m away from our pitch on this otherwise exellent campsite.
We catch the bus into the centre (excellent value bus passes $3.5 per day) and get our pilgrim passports at Igreja dos Martires (office half way down on lefthand side).
We managed a ride in the street elevator on the way also on the transport passes.
It then seems apropriate to drag Jane through the back streets of Lisbon for 8km to the parc dos nacoes as a starter. This is the expo 98 site now a shopping and tourist center. The walk through the suburbs of the city produced a few excellent photo ops as well as lunch for less than coffee croissant and OJ in the main square.
A ride back on Lisbons metro on our passes returned us to the campsite in time for a picnic dinner. It’s still cool and windy at present and ideal for walking. Photo a ladies loo.

Link to where we are on Google Maps

May 2nd Sunday.

May 2. Sunday.
We surface around 6 to go to Bristol Airport for the Easyjet flight at 10.30 to
Lisbon. A place none of the four of us have visited. Jane (Tony’s wife) is coming with us for 3 days in Lisbon before flying home. It is raining here in Somerset although forecasts are good for Portugal.
Yesterday was spent checking kit and trying to persuade Betsy to carry less, she has the largest rucksack of the three of us and we worry what the portugese firemen will make of this apparent beast of burden.
Arrived on time in Lisbon had lunch at the airport cos the post office was closed. You may ask why? Because the PO sells the transport cards to go on the buses. So we got 4 of those for 4 days and then had to get a taxi. The local buses don’t allow luggage from the airport and the airport bus went in the wrong direction. Still we found the camp site which is very quiet at the moment.
Now sitting in a quiet square in central Lisbon having a beer at an Indian/Italian restaurant. It is cool and pleasant.
It appears so far that french and english are more useful than portugese. The taxi dtiver spoke french and the indian restaurant english. But the PO spoke portuguese, result Betsy.

Link to where we are on Google Maps

Well done Ray

Ray who travelled with us from Carrilon De los Condes to Astorga 2 years ago has just finished the London marathon in just over 4 hours over half an hour faster than last year. Well done.

Machinations and Preparations.

Since arriving home as lean mean walking machines in September 2008, bodies have deteriorated, weight has gone back on and 5-10 miles before breakfast is no longer dealt with by a shrug. We hope the forgiveness of sins worked so hard to obtain lasts a little longer than the fitness of the bodies. We should have some opportunity to improve fitness during this walk but it is by no means the mammoth expedition that we completed 2 years ago. The walk from Lisbon known as the Camino Portuguesa is largely coastal and low land, the route is well trodden and waymarked from Oporto to Santiago but perhaps less so from Lisbon to Oporto (maybe the slightly larger half of the journey). We have learnt from various web sites that the Portuguese Firemen have extended a welcome to genuine pilgrims allowing them to sleep on the floor of the fire station and use facilities – we hope to find out.

 A little training took place in Pembrokeshire last week where coast path walking is fairly strenuous. Currently two and a half weeks to go before we fly from Bristol to Lisbon to start walking a few days later.

 In the mean time a picture from the very end of the last trip when we returned to various points along the route to give our wives Jane and Betsy a taste of The Way of St James.