By Avid Cruiser Contributor Geoff Edwards
The sun was coming over the horizon as we approached Lisbon.
Such a beautiful city from the air; buildings of all different shapes, ancient to innovative, tall and short. From above, Lisbon is a city that invites exploration. Of course, those were the roofs I was looking at.
We left the plane and then had a bit of a walk.
That scene repeated itself around a corner, and then again around another corner. I know it was more than a mile to the baggage area.
It always irks me when Christmas is pushed out before Thanksgiving, but I admit in a dreary area, decorated by abandoned bags and carts, it was, well merry.
Since Portugal is part of the EU, no forms had to be filled out before showing our passports. Immigration was speedy; customs a nod of the head.
The airport is lovely,
but I wanted to get to the boat port. How to do it was the problem; no one showed up to meet me. A lady and her sister had the same dilemma. She said her travel agent had promised someone would be waiting for her. The three of us hung around from 7:30 until 9:30.
I decided to take a cab, but had no idea where the port was, nor its name. The woman in the information cubicle didn’t either. She stared at her computer, pushed a few keys, moved her eyebrows up and down, and then went to ask someone. Her confidence in the name she gave me should have been encouraging. It wasn’t.
At least the airport was organized. The cabs came in, the line moved, your carts were taken, and you were off.
The fare to the ship was from 12 to 14 Euros; close to 17 to 20 dollars.
My cab driver neither spoke nor understood English. A “nice day isn’t it” just got a shrug. Several boats were in port, so I pointed and said “Seabourn.” Another shrug. Luckily, Sojourn was the last in the row so I shook my head no three times, and then yes, vigorously.
The waiting area before boarding consisted of some fake flowers, and around fifteen folding metal chairs. Boarding was not until 12:30. Well, the lady and her sister’s cab pulled up and the lady was having none of that. She ranted to other passengers, to me, and to the walls until the ship’s officer in charge of customer relations was called. Next immigration was summoned. Soon there was our group in line, then a podium, then a tight knot of four or five men, some in uniform, thrashing things out. We were aboard by 10:30.
I took a loooong nap, but was up and about for the “sail away” on Deck 9.
and good stuff was poured.
Ahhhhhh, Seabourn. Sadly, it was goodbye to Lisbon.
Later, I was invited to dine with the Enrichment Lecturer. It was a table for 12. I was at one end. My “ears” didn’t go as far as the other end. Actually the table kind of divided itself. On my left was the Social Hostess….very personable, got my jokes, and helped me get through the evening.
On my right, last to the table, was a man in his late fifties. He was what I term a conversational agitator. He’d say something, reactions would come, then he’d say, “Hey I’m just joking.” All in all, a bit weird, but a lot of fun.
After dinner I gave in to my body and crashed!