The Storks of Böbs

The Storks of Böbs
A Very Fine Pair

Day 13 Down the Iberian Peninsular-Coimbrao

Days 11-12 Coimbrao

Leaving Mira, we headed down the coast on the coast road, having taken motorways out of the Sat-Nav, everything went chickety-boo until I saw the sign for a lighthouse, alas I passed it, but the next sign was for Figueira da Foz, I in my wisdom or otherwise decided to take it, my rational being, if the last on was down to the lighthouse then this one would take us close or at least you could see it, in both cases wrong, the road took us down to the Port installations, but I thought we might at least reach the fishing harbour, again wrong it took us through port buildings in various states of repair, I decided to retrace our footsteps (well that’s what I would have done if I had been on foot). I stopped at a wider part of the road looked behind in my rear-view camera and saw flashing blue lights, it was the bobbies, oh bother what had I done now? Out got two impeccable dressed Portuguese Policemen, you could have cut yourself on the creases in their shirts, I wound down the window and they must have seen the German Number Plate, asked if we spoke Eengleesh, yes I replied, we then had a hand and foot discussion in what the Policeman thought was English. We got across that we were looking for the Fishing Harbour, was there even a Fishing Harbour in the vicinity? Bit more questioning and one of the Lads was going to phone to a colleague to ask. Linda then pointed to a place near the sea on the map, it was a campsite just along the coast. Aha, said the Portuguese Policeman in Portuguese, and said turn around and follow (all in sign language), they stopped the traffic and we turned, let them go ahead and boy did they go lickity split, every now and again stopping to let us catch up, we went across the large bridge and along the saline’s (Fig,da Foz is famous for its Salt) and about 2km down the road the kind Portuguese Policemen flashed their lights pulled aside to let us pass and with a very friendly wave good bye (well it wasn’t two fingers) went about their daily business. We travelled a little way on and came to a campsite, it was even one of the company we had been using, but not the one we were aiming for, so waiting a while to let the Police get well out of the way (we didn’t want to think that we were ungrateful), we once again retraced our tyreprints (far better word than footprints).

Alas I had stopped the Sat-Nav while following the Fuzz so we were then taken via the motorway, but  it did mean we made up for lost time (what is lost time on holiday?), we arrived at our turn off and headed via pleasant country roads to our destination in Coimbrao (the a has a squiggle on top but I don’t have a one and am too lazy to use the number pad).

We arrived at the campsite, this was down a small back lane  and set in a wonderful mature tree orchard, it even had a swimming pool, Linda went in to the reception and got us all booked in for two nights, out came Claudia, unhooked the chain across the drive (no electronic barriers here) and walked in front to exactly position us, there are no demarcation lines of bushes here, you get put where Claudia thinks is best.
That's us under the tree on the right
Unfortunately our power cable was too short, no problem off went Claudia and got an extension, plugged in, we asked about a place to eat and she directed us about 200mtrs to a small café.

It was very hot but we had at first considered sitting under the shade of the umbrellas, but once inside asked about wine and something to eat, the proprietor pointed to wine on tap, Vino Verde! He then went into the kitchen and out came his wife the cook, the menu had only 10 items (in pictures for us tourists) Linda wanted a toasted egg, cheese and ham sandwich and I the clams, just then she looked up at the TV screen and saw that the Royal Wedding was being televised, she then said let us stay inside and watch (since when had she become a Royalist?). our large glass of Vino Verde arrived closely followed by our food. Very enjoyable and after the Wedding at least there was football orientated News about Ronaldo being voted and presented with footballer of the year once again.
Linda giving a simplified Royal wave

Wine almost gone, time for a refill
We ambled back to the site and had a well earned snooze.

We suppered on cheese, salad and hams various and turned in for another early night, tomorrow being my big day I would be 70.

Fátima and my Birthday 20th May 2018

What you looking at? Never seen a goat in a window!
First  up and no breakfast for me (Tummy being playing up a bit), we walked down to the church square passing the local goat herd on the way.
Honest they are there

What you two looking at, never seen a goat at a window

It was in the square that Claudia had informed us that the butcher came, but only for 1 hour between 11 & 12:00 well he didn’t turn up this Sunday. We did buy some Tomatoes from the only stall holder. 
The village Square

Never mind we popped into the little corner shop, a right Aladins cave and bought some supplies. Then across the road to join the other neer do wells that were not in church, they were participating in wine and beer we had coffee and a savoury  puff pastry.

We then headed back to the Campsite and got the camper ready for the road and headed off on a pilgrimage to Fatima.

First a bit of history about Fátima and even why the Town is called Fátima.

Fátima is a name of Arabic origin, being the name of Mohamed’s daughter. During  the Moorish wars a Knight Gonçalo Hermigues, captured a Moorish Princess called Fátima, he took her to his home in a small village in the Serra de Aire hills, in the recently created Kingdom of Portugal. There the Princess fell in love with her captive and converting to Christianity she was baptized and given a Christian name, Oureana. But the town was called Fátima in her honour. This is the Christian version, the Muslims have a different slant, they say she was forced to marry and convert to save her life, the real truth we shall never know.
In the early 1900 the town of Fátima was nothing to write home about, even if they could read and write, it was a peasant town living mainly from hand to mouth on sheep herding and a bit of rough arable farming. One day 3 peasant children while out abiding their flocks (heard it before?). The three youngsters saw an apparition, a lady all in white, surrounded in an aura of bright light, the catholic church believes this was a vision of the Virgin Mary. More happenings or appearances took part the last before a horde of on lookers in 1913.

This small town has become one of the most visited Pilgrimage sites in the world with many thousands visiting it. So, we decided to add to that number.
It was a warm day, very warm, we took the byways and went along at a leisurely pace, arriving at about 13:00. The place was packed, though not as packed as the week prior which had been quite breath taken. We visited the new Church, the site of the Apparition Chapel and the pompous Basilica. All very grand and worth seeing.

Some walked, some biked, some even came on their hands and knees

The two shepherd Girls tombs

 After our viewing we sat in the sun Linda ate an ice and I a hamburger and chips but no bun. We then headed out of town, stopping at a supermarket on the way to get meat for a planned BBQ , it is still in the planning and the meat in the fridge.

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