(Ponte Marechal Carmona bridge over the Rio Tejo at Vila Franca de Xira)
Next week I will be attending the creativity workshop I mentioned in a previous post so we need to find a place to park Denis and Ruby while I attend. We think we found the place. It reminds me of home, for a couple of reasons. One, the campsite is a 20 minute walk to the train station where you can catch a train to the capital of Portugal, Lisbon. We live a 20 minute walk from the train station in Greystones where you can catch a train to bring you to the capital of Ireland, Dublin!
(See the footbridge? Above the Chinese symbols? Hello, the walkers!)
Two, back in 2016 I got an opportunity to travel a section of the Portuguese route of the Camino de Santiago from Lisbon with a lovely group of very experienced Camino walkers from Greystones. As we drove into town this morning, I remembered being here before. Now from the campsite I can see the foot bridge over the train tracks that took us from a busy dual carriageway to a dusty track on the route to the town of Azambuja. Nice memories.
(Can you see the river through the trees? Remember the one that was flooding a few days ago? That flows through Lisbon? I was calling it the Tagus but in Portuguese it’s called the Rio Tejo. We’re probably safe enough up here…)
Tomorrow we are having a practice run to Lisbon and this morning I went down to the station to buy the tickets. The campsite manager had given me instructions for getting a travel card that can be topped up so I went straight up to the desk at the station with my instructions. When they realised I was speaking English a second man arrived and asked, Is this for travel today?
(It’s very quiet in the campsite)
Me: No we are going tomorrow.
Man: Ah, ok. The reason I ask you about travel today is that there is a strike.
Me: Oh. Will there be a strike tomorrow?
Man: No, not tomorrow.
Me: That’s great. (Big smile, turning into quizzical frown…) What about next week?
Man: No, not next week, the week after.
ME: (Very big smile) That’s really great! Obrigada!
Isn’t that perfect, the strike is today, before the workshop and again after the workshop but not during the workshop. I think we picked a good place and a good transport option. But, as I am of a certain age and have experienced Ireland of the 80’s, I seems to remember the very essence of a strike can necessitate surprise action…
Baring all surprises I will indeed be able to travel from here to Lisbon by train for my workshop! Mairead.