As soon as we got in the taxi fom the bus I think Tom was in love and ready to make the move.
I think Lisbon has suffered long from neglect and has somehow recently come in to some money and is trying to fix the place up. The signs of neglect are everywhere.
Buildings in bad repair, disrepair, or seemingly in ruin and abandon. But the there is the building, repair, renovation, new construction, it too is everywhere.
There is homelessness and poverty, and it is evident everywhere because just like where I live in Merida the neighborhoods are mixed; homes, next to offices, next to businesses.
You can see that some parks are in good repair and maintained and others are neglected.
There are amazing things to see, there is age, and history, and events both past and present to see, experience, and imagine.
Lisbon is huge, HUGE, and my impressions are after 2 nights and 1 day of being a tourist.
What did we do; we bought a ticket for the Touribus, we've said we were going to do this everywhere so far but we have been situated so close to the stuff we wanted to see and do that it just never happened.
We enjoyed the tourbus, the route was extensive, we selected one of 4 possible routes, and not a combo route.
We went to, and climbed the Tower of Belem, then walked along the water, then went in to the monastery of jeroimo, then walked some more, then back in to the centro area, then the castle of saint george, or säo jorge. Then finally we ate, then walked some more, then went to see the elevator at santa justa, it was made by a student of gustav eiffel, and I believe there is another object by a different student of eiffel in porto, I'll have to search it out.
So then about 9pm back to the room and find a Hotel for Porto for the next few nights, and check emails and, and, and.
About 10pm I checked with Tom about going out for a bite or a wine bar, or whatever but he was content to stay in.
Living, an even visiting a seaport is so incredibly diverse and interesting.
I forget how close are here to the African nations, but the costuming, or regional dress is awesome. So colorful...
So, here it is Thursday, the 12th, and we are heading to Porto.
You have to get out into the countryside before you start seeing stand alone housing. In the cities it is always apartment complexes, or rows of housing connected side by side. Very similar to Merida, but not full blocks around just maybe 6 to 8 in a row.
Neither of us have Portuguese, and didn't bother to learn anything more than, yes, no, and thank you. It's an expressive language in that the hand gestures, tone, inflection, and intensity are vital parts of a conversation. It has the ring of a germanic or slavic based language. We've been fortunate in that so far nearly everyone has had either English, or Spanish.
We made it to Porto about 4:30, and walked out of the bus station to find a city bus sitting right outside, I asked the driver if he coud tell us where to get a bus going near our hotel. He said he was so in we step and he drops us across the street from our hotel.
We decided to stay in Vila Nova de Gaia, which is right acoss the river from Porto. Becuse, as it turns out this side is where all the cellars, cavas, and port houses are. Has something to do with avoiding taxation back in the 1700's. Sounds like a research project.