Tuesday, November 01, 2005
The Armadillo Captures the Castle
More Travels with my Aunt
There are so many places to go in Lisbon, so little time - even though we know we're staying around for a month - but we do have to go to Spain. One of the first places that we go is the Castelo de Sao Jorge since it affords a wonderful opportunity to see Lisbon stretching out to the Tagus River. The castle was an hilltop citadel of the Moors, and in 1147 King Afonso Henriques turned it into the residence of the Portuguese kings. It was in ruins after the 1755 earthquake and was rebuilt beginning in 1938. We go from the Baixa or low part of the city and take a trolley up to the cobblestone streets of Santa Cruz where we walk the rest of the way. The observation terrace is great, and we walk the ramparts imagining that we belong to another century. I try to get pictures of the Armadillo with almost nothing but the city and river below him so that he looks dangerously high - these are to show his mother! (Second picture, studying Portuguese late at night out on the balcony at Son's apartment in Lisbon; across the street is a park).
(Third picture at left) The Armadillo captures the castle!
(Fourth picture at left). The castle captures the Armadillo.
We leave the Barrio Alto (the high part of the city) and go to the Chiado (sort of the Rodeo Drive of Lisbon with Hermes and Lalique and other boutiques). There the Armadillo experiences a true rite of passage: he orders his first glass of vinho verde from the waiter who doesn't even blink. A young wine for a young Armadillo! And this vinho verde(green wine) was heavenly. On past trips, I rarely drank it, but this time it was my beverage of choice besides guarana and diet Coke. It was also to be quite a favorite with the Armadillo.
The Armadillo is in the middle under the umbrella; click on the picture (any or all of them) to enlarge it to full screen. He appears quite sophisticated for someone trying to ignore the middle-aged woman who is trying to take his picture from across the way!
Armadillo The Cluny Chronicles Portugal