Day 8 (Sunday, 28-9-03)

It was time to leave this lovely island. Franki was there on time and took us over Encumeada instead of through the tunnel. From the vantagepoint on top we had a view to the north and the south of the island. This was basically our good bye. To the airport and off to Lisbon.
In Lisbon Christopher saved the day when he noticed our luggage circulating on a different belt than indicated. Otherwise things went very well, Eric very quickly established that we had to take bus no 22 and get to the Praca Francisco sa Carneiro. From the bus stop a quick hop over the praca and we were at our hotel or rather pension: Pensao Lar do Areeiro. A problem was that the lift was broken and we lived on the 5th floor. But not a problem, by now we were hiking fit and I put on my rucksack and marched up, the pageboy had the problem because he brought the suitcase. We were allocated two to a room, except us who had Christopher as well. He promptly broke a bed by jumping onto it in his usual wild manner.
Collecting at 15h30 it was decided that we should hit town by taking the Metro (Underground). First we had to figure out how the ticket machine works. Pressing the right button it actually gives it to you in English. That made it much easier. And than there was the way to open the gate, push in the ticket, wait for it to come out through a different slot, grab it and the gate will open, run. The station we emerged from was Rossio; we came out onto the Praca something or another. Here it was decided to split and run off in all directions. My impression of the town was not very favorable, buildings look run down, it's dirty and in one section at least there was this smell of piss. We also found out why, because we wanted to make use of a toilet and found it shut. So what must the people do, easy, piss into the corner.
At 19h00 we met again to decide on a restaurant. My choice was rejected due to it being next to a dump (building site); my defense that everything around here is a dump was not accepted. In fact I was called a philistine, that is somebody who doesn't like old and run down buildings.
So we went to the restaurant on the steps, I think it was Jenny's choice. We sat outside on the steps looking over to the castle which had been lit up; it was all very nice. Food was also good and not too expensive. We were just slightly peeved by having to pay two Euro for starter that we had not ordered it just arrived on the table. We thought it was part of the hospitality, not so, it was business, making the maximum from the stupid tourists. We will not go to that restaurant again.
By about 23h00 we were back in the hotel, the lift worked this time.

Day 9---->