We got away on time today and caught a bus out to the newer precinct of East Lisbon passing the Bull Ring which has all sorts of events as well as bull fights. They don’t kill the bull here. The next place was where the World Expo 1998 occurred and where there are businesses and new apartments now. It was so different with very bold modern architecture and an incredible station that looks like trees on the roof.
After that we stopped at the Museu do Azulejo, the Tile Museum. What a spectacle. The tiles are amazing and their use as a wall covering quite exceptional. The artistic use of tiles in Portugal is quite unique.
We continued on to Belém where we visited the monastery of Jeronimos a quite fanciful building like a wedding cake. Inside was the tomb of Vasco Da Gama. After paying homage we hustled to the famous pastry shop where we queued for Portuguese tarts. This is supposed to be the place of their origin and they cook and sell over 10,000 a day!We decided to have take away after being in the queue and then told we could have gone to a table and been waited upon. They were warm and delicious and live up to their fame.
The weather was playing with us today as it fluctuated from sunny to rainy. Bill and I sat in the open top bus freezing and then drying out! I was glad I was wearing my puffy jacket! We moved on to the sculpture of Henry the Navigator, the monument to the discoveries, which was built to commemorate 500 years since his death. We have passed it a couple of times but today we ascended to the top for a panoramic view up the Tegus River and across Lisbon. The sculpted figures are beautiful and the whole thing conveys the sense of being at sea. Even the paving has the wavy tiles to simulate the sea.
Our next adventure was a train back to the city and then the underground to as close as possible. All went smoothly. When we emerged from the underground we were like moles in the sunlight not knowing where we were until we recognised a pastry shop we had seen on the first day. We were very close to home.
Outside our apartment was a football team from Brazil, we think, drinking and singing and kicking a soccer ball. The noise was deafening but at least tuneful. It seemed to go on for at least an hour or so but finally quiet by 7.00 pm. Relief.