06 April 2016
I left the apartment in Lisbon quite late, but in time for the opening of the cathedral and my first entry (carimbo) in my credençial.
Then – it was off on the Camino.
Luckily for me there were two arrows just outside the cathedral or I would not have stood a chance.
The streets are narrow and quaint. How any cars or trucks can negotiate them is beyond me.
The arrows marking the Camino are few and far between and are hidden by parked cars or worn out by years of weather. I wish I had carried some spray-paint to renew them. Clearly, someone had used the spray paint. Quite artistically.
Mistakes were inevitable as I missed a few arrows and had to backtrack. Also – there was the dearth of bridges at Sacavém to cross the busy roads and railway track. I was so enjoying loving the walk along the Rio Tejo through the Parque de Nações that I missed my turn off. I had to walk a further 5.5km than I had planned, just to find a footbridge. It was well worth the extra as the walk along the Rio Tejo is great. The statue of the woman in the photo is Princess Catherine of Braganza who became Queen Catherine of England.
The weather turned really hot (22°C) which I had not expected, and I had to shed 2 layers.
One big difference here – NO breadcrumb trail of pilgrims as on the Camino Francés. So far this month, just 15 have started from Lisbon according to the log at the Cathedral. It is far less popular and less waymarked.
My host this evening is Ana. She is a very elegant lady for whom nothing is too much trouble. Her house in Sacavém is immaculate. She kindly washed my walking clothes for me and even allowed me the luxury of a deep hot-tub bath. Bliss – sheer bliss…
Tomorrow – Villafranca de Xira. The route looks as though it follows a major arterial road. Hmmmm….