Friday, October 12, 2018

Santiago de Compostela to Amarante, Portugal, October 11 and 12, 2018

Yesterday was pretty uneventful.  I couldn't make any plans until my backpack arrived so I decided to keep my room and stay another night in Santiago.  Chris and I went back to the Cathedral and nearby he got his Compostela- the fancy certificate written in Latin saying you 'did' the Camino.  I didn't bother to get one - I mean, who gives a f . . . about that, certainly not me, and besides, how am I going to make sure it gets home safely?  You can buy a tube for 1 euro, but I didn't need that extra to haul around for the next few months.  After that, I wandered home and much to my surprise, my backpack had arrived!  So, I booked the first bus out of Dodge, I mean Santiago, which wasn't until noon today.  I spent the rest of yesterday wandering and hanging out at the Seminario.  Today, I walked to the bus station and was at the Porto, Portugal airport-


by 3 pm to pick up my car.  Not sure about that decision now that I've had an afternoon with my Fiat.  It's a Tipo 4 door hatchback giant of a thing.  And, to top it all off, the collision insurance that comes with my WestJet credit card is no good in Portugal.  The Portuguese government requires collision insurance to be purchased with the car rental so my price doubled!  Oh well, the car allows me to go where I want to, when I want to and I'll see a lot more of this beautiful country.

I came to Amarante and am staying in a nice hostel, alone in a two bed room.  It took me forever to find the hostel; I went by it and had to park and call and then go around because the streets are one ways.  Luckily the second time around there was a parking space right out front.  They gave me a map to get to the parking lot but do you think I could find it?  I drove back and forth, back and forth.  Finally I called and the poor girl at the desk really didn't know what to tell me.  Finally I stopped and asked a fellow and he was kind enough to drive and show me the turn off.  Already I've met some awesome people here compared to the ucky Spanish.  I think I can count on one hand how many helpful/kind/nice Spaniards I met.  They are so arrogant and rude!  The Portuguese seem much nicer, so far anyway.

So, tomorrow I'll walk a few meters from my hostel and see an old bridge and church then head for Paso de Rejau which is in the heart of wine country.  I'm not going to take a tour; I've done that and can visit a winery and take a boat cruise for a lot less than tour companies charge.

Here's hoping for an accident free three weeks!


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