Thursday, January 10, 2013

Day 3- Alverca to Azambuja, 30.8 km

It looked like rain all day. The grey sky was discouraging. I think we would have felt better if the skies had just opened up, instead of just teasing us.

Today was 97% grinding, tiring road walking. We had a choice; walk on the left and see death coming or walk on the slightly wider right shoulder and be surprised. We chose the left and survived.

The guide book indicated that the road passes under two grain silos. An odd detail, I thought. We're on a busy road with a gazillion cars and trucks zooming by and we should be on the lookout for grain silos?

Oh, those grain silos. In the distance we saw two bridges, wide enough for a compact car to drive on, crossing high above us. They came from distant hills, passed over us, and ended up directly at a train station. They were long distance conveyer belts for grain.

We finally go off the busy road and walked along a promenade next to the river, past three boating clubs of diminishing quality and a lone kayaker swishing his way briskly down river.

Lunch in Vilafranca de Xira was a bit of a production. Instead of sticking to our plan of quick, cheap, and easy we did slow, not cheap enough, and added a wild goose chase. We crossed through the train station, up and down the steps and stupidly bypassed a few qualifying places to get to a take out place where we ordered way to much food. After we paid I thought to ask for plastic forks and spoons. "Sorry, we only have knives but you can buy forks at the supermarket just down the street."
I'll never know why I didn't just take the knives but we decided to find the store and buy plastic utensils. Fifteen minutes later, unable to find the store, I sheepishly went back and got knives. We crossed back, up and over and grumpily ate, throwing nearly a third of it away.

Gyu eon did some calculations and determined that if we continued at this rate, we'd have to walk 8 more hours to finish. He was clearly worried. We assured him that we'd make better time from now on. We won't get lost again or waste time.

The pleasant walk ended when we joined the highway again for 1.5 km. We happily turned off at Lidl Grocery and walked through a seemingly forgotten industrial zone.

To be continued...

Next up: unnamed train station, traffic, nice cafe.

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