Porto in Spring

A sweet-smelling linden tree and daisies

This was taken as I rested in a park on my way to the cathedral yesterday. Google Maps had assured me it would take seven minutes to get there but it turned out they meant by metro. it was a very hot day and I had taken advantage of the afternoon off to explore a little. In this park I realized the mix up and since there was a metro nearby I decided to try it out. Tickets are issued strictly by machine with narry an employee in sight but it turns out that it is quite easy to understand the system. I arrived at the cathedral in two stops. On exit I crossed the street to an imposing building that turned out to be a train station decorated in traditional Portuguese tiles.

Country scenes
Battle scenes
It really is a train station

After gawking at the beauty I headed up the hill to the cathedral. Unlike French or English gothic cathedrals it has a rather small main church surrounded by many small chapels and a cloister. I was glad to get inside as the sun was very strong.

St James as a pilgrim himself

The cathedral had something of a fortress air as one can climb ( more stairs) up to a sort of battlement arrangement and then even higher into a tower.

More tiles on left wall

I would have expected more religious scenes on the tiles but a lot were hunting depictions with dogs retrieving game and surprised looking angels looking on. I surprised myself by only going half way up the tower. The steps were very uneven. I was in sandals. I had already walked for miles and I had a feeling going down would be a lot worse than toiling up. Discretion was the better part of valour in this case but I reflected that time was…..

Guarding the cathedral

I zoomed home on the metro as I was on the schedule to “ close” and I had no idea what that meant. It would have been simple except that a pilgrim with a reservation had called to say he would be very late. All the young ( and efficient ) staff had an evening out planned. I assured them I would manage and off they went. The harried pilgrim arrived at 11:30 in such a mixed state of gratitude and distress over his many contretemps in travelling to us that I had quite the time to calm him down. However, at last I felt I had acted as a true hospitalera in tending to the needs of a pilgrim in welcoming him and settling him in.

Today was a quieter day although I enjoyed many interesting conversations with pilgrims. The usual cleaning chores took up much of the morning. We had our communal lunch and I spent a well-deserved half hour in the hammock before answering the inevitable question “ (coastal route or inland ?)for a pair of Americans. An Italian pilgrim decided to cook a delicious pasta and ham and cheese dish for a select few of us. Well, it would be rude to refuse, after all. Then I did a bit of clerical work and so, to bed. That’s a camellia tree in the courtyard of our Alberge.

The full moon rising
Almost forgot … the very first cello ( stamp) I administered into a pilgrim “ passport”

5 thoughts on “Porto in Spring

  1. Keep them coming.I am going to make you tepeat it all again because you seem to be enjoying yourself.Good night

    Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android


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