Kind of Like Real Hiking Today

Maharinas to Viana de Castelo- 14.5 miles

   Continuing to be puzzled why Brierley’s guidebook is shorting the actual miles I am logging on Fitbit.  If really happened yesterday and again today.  He listed 13.2.  

It was a different scene today that included two up hills: Alto ( 140 meters) and Monumento (110 m).  Hardly bumps, but when you grow accustomed to zero seaside miles it was taxing.  

We started out in light rain around 8:30.  After we reached Belinho we had coffees and a snack for €4.  We both enjoyed seeing these little towns wake up and made Portugese greetings to many of the residents. 

 The very narrow streets continued to be a bit stressful to navigate as the tiny diesel cars whipped by just a few feet from us as they passed.  

We loved watching the tiny Portugese dogs agitating about us, as well as the ducks, turkeys, goats, and chickens milling about and punctuating the morning with their animal communication systems. 

     We entered some eucalyptus forests that were surprisingly wild.  This segment of the coast is hilly.  

The villages had frequent mini- shrines recessed into the walls flanking the streets.  

There were also incredibly beautiful signposts to admire.  

    Marcia and I enjoyed walking with my new Polish pal Caesar.  I understand Polish  pretty well, but don’t speak at the same level.  While we walked today, we some Polish as much as possible pointing out objects and exchanging English and Polish versions as needed.  We laughed a lot today, and I even remembered the words to some silly Polish songs to him.  
   The real feature of the day was the seafood dinner that Marcia and an enjoyed in the waterfront in  Viana de Castelo.  It was a world class meal. 

 She had broiled salmon and I had cod with vegetables after we had appetizers of crackers with a local cheese spread, and incredible olive medley.  We had a liter of local red wine, then flan and chocolate mousse. The house then came over and graced us with warm berry compote, small glasses of delicious port wine, and Marcia receiving double kisses from our waiter.    Total, including taxes was $40. 

We are staying at the alberge here for $6 each.  Unfortunately we both have top bunks but that appears to be OK with us.  

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