Hello, it’s me…
I’m back to blogging, this time from a different country. I find myself in Portugal for a couple of weeks. I opted to travel on British Airways via London because that was the shortest transit time, meaning that I’d spend only about 14 hours travelling. The idea was to arrive in Lisbon on Friday morning and still have time to take care of a few things.
It didn’t happen that way though. The plane’s main fuel pump malfunctioned and no clearance for take off was given until it was fixed. They spent an hour trying to fix and eventually had to replace it. Thankfully there was a spare in Joburg. Another 3 hours and we were on our way.
Here’s the rub – all of this was happening with us on the plane already! So the repair took place on the tarmac with a plane load of people! Eating dinner! I would’ve loved to disembark.
We took off 4 hours late and I missed my connecting flight. I must say that British Airways were very professional – those of us transiting were met by customer service representatives and I’d already been booked on the later flight to Lisbon.
A transit in London is not ideal when your home currency has devalued to the point that £1 costs R20.00. A fish pie and a pot of tea cost me £30.00 which is R600 – a week’s groceries for Che and me! That’s the fish pie on the right.
Unbeknownst to me Portugal is in the middle of a 4-day weekend – the commemoration of the April 25th Carnation Revolution. It was supposed to have been a military coup to overthrow the dictatorship that had been in force since 1933.
At the same time, the non-violent civil groups decided to campaign as well. All of this led to the fall of the dictatorship without shots being fired. When the people took to the streets to celebrate this, carnations were put into the muzzles of rifles and on the soldiers’ uniforms. Monday the 25th is a public holiday because of this. It’s rather beautiful, peaceful political change.
I’m now in beautiful Sagres in the Algarve, after a romantic and relaxing train journey. I do love travelling by train. If there was a train from Joburg to Europe, I can guarantee that I’d be on it, even if it took a few days! Better than ships like in the olden days – the trip was the holiday because it took a few weeks.
I’ve taken some beautiful photos already, a testament to the beautiful subject-matter rather than the photographer. I’ll be posting these soon. I found a few hidden gems in Lisbon, things I didn’t know existed and I was blown away by some of them.
I’m writing this in a hurry which is resulting in a disjointed post with dubious grammar. As long as the spelling is correct I’m good to publish. Time for better writing later. Right now I need a cup of tea – it feels like the right time for that.
That’s it for now. It’s still daylight outside and it’s already 19h50. That’s really it for now.
As always, thanks for reading and please leave a comment.