12 April 2018

Our bodies are weak!

We bears of little brain do not like it when it’s tough or wet or cold. We prefer cuddles to rough stuff. When Alan said it would rain all day we tried to persuade him to take the train to Azambuja, telling him it was far preferable to getting wet and cold and dicing with death amongst the rush hour traffic! Well he thought about it for all of five seconds and said, NO!


We were up early and before setting off donned our wet suits before going out. We don’t like it when we get covered up, but at least we stay dry and our human is good to us for he chats all the time telling us how it is.



The initial drizzle soon settle down to pouring cats and dogs! The Way took us along major highways with rush hour traffic. The worst were the busses thundering by, for they threw up spray which generally soaked our poor BBF from the knee down and so his shoes were quickly sodden! He didn’t complain too much, saying skin is waterproof so we just have to grin and bear it. Adding Pilgrims are meant to suffer in any case!



After about six kilometres we finally joined the Camino proper.


 
The Way took us along the banks of the Tejo and had these gondolas been working we could have taken one!



The building at the end is just like an Hotel in Dubai and is a Hotel too. 



The trees now gave us a little respite from the rain which never stopped.



It wasgrey from sea to sky as you can see.



Occasionally we came across signs which showed we were were on the right path.



This statue interestingly enough is of Catherine of Braganza who became a Queen of England in 1666 which was when Alan‘s old Regiment was formed!


 
Though it had stopped raining and the path indicated we should follow the river, Alan did not as the map indicated the path went through swamp country!



The Weather App had said that flooding was possible in low lying areas and though he already had wet feet, didn’t fancy wading! Can you get wetter than wet we asked, but he did not bother to reply! He made the decision to walk along the N10 a major highway instead. There were often no footpaths only a white line as hard shoulder which on occasion was right at the verge! Not a nice path with all the traffic but once committed we had to just grin and bear it again! Was it better than wading through swamps?



We stopped for lunch around 13:30hrs, and had an isotonic drink and a fish pie.



We had already walked some 24kms as you can see and various Camino Apps and maps were saying we still had 12 kilometres to go to Alhandra, which Alan did not fancy at all.

He found a hostel in a Fire Brigade Station, which apparently had 50 bunks and was in Povoa de Santa Iris which was only some three and a half kilometres away.

Back on the road and we met two other pilgrims. One a French Canadian whose name we have forgotten and a Dutch lady from Tilburg called Rianne. The Canadian was looking for his hotel while Rianna wanted to go onto Alpriate! 

Alan and Rianne decided to go on together and soon the fire station was reached!



50 Bunks indeed what it was, was pull up a bit of floor and lay down!



The two humans improvised with mats found in the hall, showered and changed. The water at least was hot!








Alan hung his washing on the net of the goal posts. Goodness knows if it will be dry by morning?



The humans got their pilgrims passport stamped and made a 5€ donation for their bed spaces!



They then went in search of sustenance which they found quite quickly and with isotonic drinks, chicken and chips with salad were soon feeling better!


 
Back in the hostel a rainbow was sighted always a good sign, but the flying fish gives us cause for concern! 

Nor do our humans have the hall to themselves! They might be the only pilgrims in residence, but the fire brigade are now using the hall for karate training!!

Such is life on the Camino!