Saturday July 15, 2017
We took our time in the morning and after a late breakfast, we packed our backpacks and headed to the bus station at 11 am. By 12 pm, the scheduled departure time, we were on our way.
The temperature was the same as it had been almost every day, cool in the morning and warm during the day.
We met a Romanian man, about my age, perhaps a little younger, who was limping a bit at the bus station. He informed us that he had just completed the 835 km ( 520 mile ) Camino trail from France in 20 days. He only had about 3 weeks to complete the hike, so he had averaged 40 km ( 25 miles ) each day, which is quite impressive, however that didn’t give him much time to do anything else.
I also met a young German lady who had hiked part of the Portuguese Camino by herself. This was her first Camino hike and she plans to do a longer hike in the future, possibly the coastal route of the French Camino.
During the bus ride, I had an opportunity to reflect on some of the things I had experienced.
Although both countries were nice places to visit, I preferred Portugal to Spain. It appeared cleaner, friendlier and had slightly better food ( particularly coffee and orange juice ).
Due to the long history both countries have experienced, we saw a lot of magnificent buildings.
We saw more dogs in Spain and there was a lot more evidence that dogs had been on our paths there. We also saw some interesting signs that dog owners had posted regarding their dogs.
Grafiti and smoking were common in both countries, although I felt they were more prevalent in Spain.
I took some pictures of buildings, landscapes, plants, trees and the people, however there were too many to put in my journal.
We gained an hour when we crossed into Portugal and we arrived at the Lisbon bus terminal at the scheduled time of 8:40 pm almost 10 hours after we had left Santiago. We grabbed a taxi to our hostel for 10 Euro and after checking in, we went out for something to eat at one of the many restaurants in the area. By the time we finished our meal, the restaurants were starting to close and the bustling streets were slowly thinning out. However, I occasionally ( Pete & Kathy constantly) still heard noises coming from the city during the night.