I have always loved writing, and now that I am retired I thought I would be able to find time to write, but it seems that I still manage to fill my days with activities. I have however found that while I travel, I enjoy writing about some of the interesting things we do. I hope you enjoy reading of our adventures as much as I like writing about them.
Tuesday, August 6, 2019
Waiting For the Sunset
Crossing the Bridge
Porto, Portugal is situated on the
Douro River, just a bit inland from the Atlantic on the west coast of
Portugal. Our apartment faces east, so we do not see the sunset, but
we had heard that it was pretty special. We got to see the glow from
the setting sun on the opposite riverbank, but never a glimpse of the
actual sunset. Tonight we decided that one of our Portuguese
adventures would be to all go across the river and watch the sunset.
We packed a picnic lunch, two bottles of Portuguese Vino Verdi, and a
couple of cans of Super Bock beer.
The bridge beside the apartment is a
two level bridge with cars using the bottom tray and trams using the
top tray. There is a pedestrian walkway on each level, but to get the
best view of the sunset, our UBER driver from earlier in the day,
suggested going to the park across the bridge on the upper level. He
said the best sunset views were from there.
Everyone is here
So as the day started turning to
evening, I set out to meet everyone else across the river. I was
carrying the olives, napkins and the all important wine cork/bottle
opener. 135 steps to the top of the hill and then across the bridge
to the opposite side of the river. The Park across the river is
situated perfectly to watch the sunset. The Douro River flows out to
the Atlantic here and the river rounds a bend and flows due west as
it exits the city. The park is high on a hill looking out towards the
mouth of the river, so the views are perfect. You see the river, one
of the five Porto bridges, and the old historic city climbing the
hill across the river.
Sunset watching is obviously a popular
activity in Porto. The park slowly filled up with people as the skies
darkened. The park has rows of concrete walls perfect height for
sitting to watch the sunset and
Waiting for the Sunset
I managed to snag a prime section of
wall. We arrived about 45 minutes before sunset so the park was just
filling up, but as it came closer to the sun going down a steady
stream of people came across the bridge and up from surrounding
neighbourhoods. The park rapidly filled up with people. A busker
arrived and set up with a guitar and small amplifier to play popular
songs for everyone. There were vendors selling popcorn and beer, so
obviously drinking wine and beer in the public park is not a problem.
A family sat down the wall from us, and a little boy took it on as
his personal mission to chase the “rats with feathers” (pigeons)
away. Overall the park developed a festive carnival like atmosphere.
Clouds did roll in for a while and
there was some concern about the sunset, but fortunately a few clouds
usually make a sunset more dramatic and Porto did not fail to
impress, producing a beautiful sunset over the Douro River. A great
end to another nice day in Portugal.