T3:E3 – Alverca do Ribatejo>>Vila Nova da Rainha
In the other seasons and stages, I always had the company of family and/or friends. Not today. Today was the first time I set out on my own.
I left my daughter's house and decided to take a walk past the Igreja dos Pastorinhos, still in Alverca, a church that has great meaning for the family and, coincidence or not, I practically tripped over one of the posts that signals the Way.
From there, he continued following the route until he reached the “dangerous” N10. Who so classifies it is one of the paper books I carry in my pocket. You're right, because the traffic is brutal, the trucks are many and large, but with care, attention and slowness, you can do it.
But good things also happened, like a car slowing down, the driver rolling down the window and wishing you a “bon voyage” or a driver of one of those ten-wheelers waving a greeting.
Afterwards it was good. From Alhandra to Vila Franca de Xira, it's all through a spectacular riverside park, always overlooking the Tagus and with all the conditions for walking or cycling.
I had lunch at a tavern in Carregado and here I take the opportunity to highlight the excellent work of the Vila Franca de Xira Council in marking the two paths, the one to Fátima and the one to Santiago. Congratulations!
Arriving at the planned destination, Vila Nova da Rainha, I went to the Parish Council to stamp the credential, asking if there was a place to sleep. There simply wasn't. Despite feeling able to continue after 25 km, as the route actually passed through the halt, the temptation was great so I decided to go back and go to the asylum for my daughter.
And I watched trains pass by until the suburban arrived. I, used to the calm of trains in the Algarve, was appalled by the brutal speed of trains here. When they passed, everything shuddered. You have no idea.
But the adventure does not end here. As there was no one at the stop, not even a machine to buy a ticket, I got on the train clandestinely. And didn't the CP reviewer show up? Among the explanations I gave, the noise of the train, my Algarve accent, trying to pay with an expired transport ticket that my daughter had at home, with all this the man pulls out the ATM so I can pay the ticket and asks :
– Where are you going?
"Alverca," I said, with great conviction.
– But Alverca has already passed, says the proofreader.
– It can't be, it's the season to follow, I insisted.
After an explanation about the map of the stations and the arrival in Póvoa, I was evicted without paying a ticket and a load of instructions on changing lines and how to get back.
But the tragic-comedy continued. To avoid further entanglements, I decided to call my daughter to pick me up and, while I was choosing the place, I came across a little square where some old people (like me) were sitting who immediately declared, loud and clear: This one is lost!
Running away from them, I come face to face with another who asks me: Path to Fatima?
After some explanations saying that there was no problem, my daughter calls to say that she was on the other side of the station and not on the one where I was.
Anyway, misadventures of an Algarve in Greater Lisbon...
Read the other episodes of Season 3 of The Walker saga:
Episode 1 - Next to the Lisbon Cathedral, Season 3 of the Walker saga begins
Episode 2 - Today we don't have leatherettes