Monday, November 23, 1998

Today was the best day of my trip so far. It took a while to find a place to rent a scooter, but I finally scored about 10:30 a.m. at Aluguer Moto. The cost was 2000 esq a day plus gas.

The idea was to drive out to Cabo de Sao Vicente, near Sagres; which is the southwestern-most point in Europe. It turns out the 30km trip was a much more difficult ride than I had expected. About 7 km out I seriously considered turning back. The wind was brutal off the Atlantic. While not incredibly cold, it was very wearing on my body and mind. I plugged on, stopping occasionally for a picture, a smoke, or a cup of coffee.

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Landscape scene near the coast

The 30 km ride took two hours. The landscape along the way kept me going -- rolling hills, occasional ocean vistas, and white towns. I had a lamb-burger and beer for lunch next to the tourist office while inspecting my free map.

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Secluded beaches tucked beneath the cliffs

After lunch I cruised out to the point at Sagres, then out to Cabo de Sao Vicente. The most spectacular views were from the point at Sagres, overlooking the marina, and along the Algarve coast.

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Sagres Marina and the south coast of Portugal

The ride back was much easier, knowing what to expect. I paced myself, tackling 10k at a time, and made the trip in 45 minutes. When I reached the city limits of Lagos, I studied my map for a few minutes, and ended up getting lost anyway. I finally dropped off the bike just before dark.

In the evening I found a computer store willing to let me connect to the Internet for a few hundred esq. It was so good to hear from Jana, (The Most Awesome Woman In Knoxville), and good to write back to her.

Continue to day 8.

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