Starting right in
Today is Sunday and the bike will arrive at 10am. I went out to breakfast on the main avenue.
The bike arrived by van at 10am as promised. I rode a short distance out South, just to get a feel for it and had english stew for lunch in a British pub, Lighthouse, at the marina.
In the afternoon I started on the 37 mile route that I got from this wed site
I probably did 20+ of it. This particular route is all north of the "main" highway going east west, the N125.
Very nice country. A vineyard
Going down a winding road. There are shadows. All at once at the bottom of the hill, I am in dirt and pot holes. I took these two pictures to "Document" the road hazard!
Even a pond.
I'm not going to go into a lot of detail of the routes. I do actually have most of them recorded in a phone app called Gala GPS. I was able to download 2 routes from Huw Thomas's peddle portugal and I mainly road on them and offshoots. Here is the map of the first one that he calls Lagos back roads.
You see the red circle over on the right. That is Lagos where I start. Note the yellow line that runs horizontal, east and west about the middle of the map and is labeled N125. So this first day I rode on the red line up and all the way around on the red, 55, 5, 10 and to 45 and Sao Joao starting down the left side of the curve. Next, I went down the leg numbered 20 and met the N125. From there I just high tailed it home. Way too rocky and rough along the side of N125 but I had over done it and just needed to get home.
After shower, I once again entered the labyrinth of streets that is the walled part of Lagos.
For the first days, I just walked the came route to the areas I knew. Finally in the last days I could freelance around the town!
Stopped in to see Valentina at Baffi Bar that she and her husband own. They came from Turin Italy. She has one Belgium beer in a bottle. I never found another Belgium in all of Lagos! Then a drink at the local British pub, Fools and Horses. On to a dinner at tourist place Valentina suggested Os Arcos. Good introduction to the 100s of outdoor empty restaurants but no need to repeat. Then back to the Lighthouse bar at the marina where I had lunch. It is all British expats and vacationers. There was dancing and I got to meet a night time bar tender, Tam, who sings, does art and has lived in Russia. One last picture of the main square and its CRAZY statue.
Home to beer, port, nuts, TV and bed.
Woke up to rain. Checked outside and decided to delay. On email, I learned of an applicant from Simmons College for a Historical Internship I manage so I wrote to her and the weather cleared enough to get me out.
I started down the 3 flights of stairs from my apartment with my bike and realized I had a flat rear tire. Rather than using my one spare tube, I walked the bike through town to a bike shop I had seen. They could not help me but directed me to return to the square with the crazy statue and where to find "Miguel the bicycklet mechanic". I stopped in the news stand on the square. They had never heard of "Miguel'. Than, after I had left, the clerk came running out yelling, "oh Miquel", his shop is just there. Miguel was sitting waiting for action. He showed me that I should not only get a tube but also a new tire. I was more than happy to take his advise and was out of there in 20 minutes!
This was close to Fools and Horses pub and they were just opening. I approached the female bar tender and asked if my any chance she had a place to put my "bad" tire for the day. She graciously accepted, and I was on my way.
I road the same route as yesterday, up to Sao Joao. This is the windmill ridge as one approaches the town.
I stopped in the taverna for lunch. A selfie
We always joke about what is missing here?
The crowd at the taverna, several are 60 year old Expat women.
Back on my bike and repeating yesterday's route down to N125. This is a sign for the next town and the town itself.
Today, when I get to the N125, I don't turn left to Lagos but right, until I see this sign.
There I turn left and head down to the beach. It is a wonderful spot.
Now, instead of going back to the N125, Huw's route directs me up what he says is the hardest pitch on the route. The road leading to it is small cobbles, a real pain to ride!
And the bridge at the end, where I hung out on several later rides. Now it was time to tackle the 17% grade. I got a start but was glade to get off the walk the steep part. I did take this picture looking back down to this Boca Rio beach.
I had terrible terrible wind all day but at least the wind is not cold! I worked my way toward Lagos, using Huw's route. When it crossed the N125 to head back north, I pioneered my own route home. The highlight was working my way through the town of Luz. I managed to ride more than a couple blocks the wrong way on a one way road. I also think this was the day I did not recognize the art work in the circle where I get off the N125 and instead proceeded down the hill into town and had to turn around and ride up that terrible hill!
Shower, out to Baffi Bar to see Valentina. Oh No, she is closed on Monday! I stop in Fools and Horses to get my tire. The people there recommended a restaurant called Cantinho do Algarovo that was closed Sunday but is open today at 6:30. I get there early. Another couple is also early and eyeing the place.I come back at 6:30 and am seated, right near the door. Soon after the other couple comes in and are seated next to me.
I'm terrible on names. I will call them the Paris couple. He was studding Chinese at UC Davis in 1969 and she was a modern dancer. They married and raised their children in Paris. He is 76 and suffers from oracular degeneration. He says the Kindal helps, he reads all the time and when asked for something he had enjoyed recently, he offered up Mr Sufferage. She is not walking as well as she used to. They were gracious enough to keep me company at this and 2 future dinners. Generally, I use the bar keeps to fend off being alone but it was wonderful to share these meals. We all thought Cantinho was excellent. The people at Fools had said to be sure and tell the owner Carlos that Ray and Tina had sent me. I was also instructed to have Carlos pick the wine as that is his specialty. One more stop at Lighthouse to talk to Tam and home for beer, port, nuts and TV. At least when you are an obsessive compulsive, you know what is going to happen next.