Alverca to Vila Franca de Xira

8/30 – today we planned an easy day of just 7 miles. Our guidebook recommended a 19 mile day, but we split it, as we are taking our time, and wanted to enjoy the town of Vila Franca de Xira. Tomorrow we will walk the other 12 miles.

We met two pilgrims from Brazil, who have completed six different caminhos. They arrived in Lisbon yesterday, walked until 10:30 last night, and would walk another 20 miles today. Everyone walks their own Caminho.

We walked some dusty early morning trail, and got to see some roses and morning glories in bloom:
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We spent an hour on a nasty road walk along highway N10, but during this stretch several bikers wished us Bom Caminho, and an old man waved his arms to slow down the traffic as we passed. Nice People of a Portugal! We are asked if we are walking to Fatima, as both pilgrimages share a trail at this point. As Fatima is on the way, we are considering going there too. Why not?

Finally, the path took us back to the River Tejo, where we enjoyed walking on a multi-use track with bikers, joggers and families enjoying a Saturday outing.

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We got to see our first bullfighting stadium, from a distance, there are posters of matadors all over, and bull is on the menu, so we think this is a bullfighting town:

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We had another mystery lunch, as this is not Lisbon, so there are no tourist menus translated to English. We asked for the specials of the day, and the waitress asked lots of questions, to which we replied Yes. I ended up with codfish soup (delicious!) and a pork sandwich. Jim got fried pork loin with (the now expected) rice, fries and salad. This really isn’t hard, if you don’t care what you get!

Here is our hostel, where we have a private room, and our own bathroom across the hall. We just did some laundry – see Jim’s red shirt hanging out to dry?

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A lovely afternoon in a lovely town.

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