Algarve day 4

Tuesday 9 July 2013 Our fourth day in the Algarve was the most languid day of the entire trip. We had slowed down to a virtual standstill. The weather was perfect. There were many weeks of travel behind us and several weeks still lay ahead. Ruby cooked a slap-up breakfast with eggs, mushrooms, spinach and…

Algarve day 3

Monday 8 July 2013 On our third day in the Algarve, Susie and Ruby slept in again so I decided to explore the cliffs in front of our tiny cottage. It was quite difficult to pick out a path among the dry stone walls and prickly scrub, but I knew there were some goat tracks…

Algarve day 2

Sunday 7 July 2013 If you need to recover from a cold, you might as well be perched on the top of a cliff in the Algarve, with warm weather, lots of food and wine, and some sympathetic company. I was well and truly on the mend by the time we arrived in the Algarve,…

Lisbon—Algarve day 1

Saturday 6 July 2013 On our final day in Lisbon we took leave of our host, André. He bought us a small bag of treats from the pastelería. We walked out of the Alfama to the nearest metro station. We had little time to spare by the time we arrived at the bus station. As we…

Lisbon Day 4

Friday 5 July 2013 It was difficult to come to terms with the fact that today was our last full day in Lisbon. We had not allowed nearly enough time to explore this fascinating city. Four lifetimes would not be enough, so four days was completely inadequate. We keep reassuring ourselves that we will return…

Lisbon day 3

Thursday 4 July It was shaping up to be a scorcher in Lisbon, with the temperature set to peak at 41°C. After the disappointments of the day before, we were determined to tackle three different attractions. The first was the exhibition of art by Joana Vasconcelos at the Palácio National da Ajuda; the second was…

Lisbon day 2

Wednesday 3 July 2013 Sometimes when you’re travelling, things don’t always go according to plan. Today was one of those days. Furthermore, Susie’s resilience was reduced by a headache that had begun two mornings ago in Porto, and which she was unable to shake. This was one of the unfortunate side-effects of sinusitis, and in…

Nazaré—Lisbon day 1

Tuesday 2 July When we woke, our view of Nazaré was no longer obscure; it had vanished altogether. The mist blowing in from the Atlantic had completely blanketed the town in an opaque fug that was so thick you needed a raincoat to walk through it. And walk through it we did. After packing up…

Nazaré—Lisbon day 1

Tuesday 2 July 2013 When we woke, our view of Nazaré was no longer obscure; it had vanished altogether. The mist blowing in from the Atlantic had completely blanketed the town in an opaque fug that was so thick you needed a raincoat to walk through it. And walk through it we did. After packing…

Nazaré day 3

Monday 1 July 2013 On Monday we woke to find that we were looking out over a completely different view of Nazaré. The terracotta roofs of the town below were shrouded in a white mist that was blowing in from the Atlantic Ocean. It left a cool, wet kiss on our cheek as we walked…

Nazaré day 2

Sunday 30 June 2013 On our first morning in Nazaré we tried breakfast in one of the cafés in the Sitio. We ordered a croissant, a coffee, and orange juice and a fresh roll with egg. What arrived on the table bore little resemblance to any of these items. We were learning one of the…

Porto—Nazaré day 1

Saturday 29 June 2013 Whenever we mentioned that we were going to Nazaré, we seemed to get an equivocal reaction from locals. We knew that there was some kind of stigma attached to it, but our language ability was too poor to figure out what kind of stigma it was. We had mentioned to the…