Monday 6th April
When we arrived here at Vila Nove do Barquinha last night the sun was shining, the car park was full up and we had to wait a while until some of the cars moved off so that we could park and the serious business of sorting my dinner out could start. It seemed like a good idea to have a good look round in the morning and take some photos then.
I got up extra early this morning as a JCB rumbled about and when I looked out there was a gang of workmen digging up the pavement. Don’t they know it’s a holiday today? In typical Bank Holiday fashion it was very overcast and soon began to rain on and off for the rest of the day. About 9.30am my phone started making lots of noises and lo and behold, the town’s free wifi had been turned on and all my Facebook messages which had been saved up started to flood in.
Rain plus Internet plus end of another quarter means that it is VAT time so out came my accounts and I whiled away a couple of hours working for HMRC as an unpaid tax collector (or in this case a tax giver away, I managed to reclaim a small amount this time).
After lunch we had a short walk around the park. It’s a large park situated on the banks of the Rio Tejo, one of the major Portuguese rivers which gives it’s name to the whole region, the Alentejo. The wines produced around here are amongst the best that Portugal has to offer, rich and fruity reds and fresh white.
The Tejo flows in from Spain running just south of Madrid.
The park won the National Architectural Landscape of the Year award in 2007 and features play areas, sculptures, flowing water and fountains and cafes.
The motorhome area is to the right of this photo, the river is in front of us.
This is one of the sculptures in the park. The sign board described it with a very arty bit of prose praising it’s inner space in juxtaposition to it’s place within the community or some such old rubbish, it was almost impossible to read to the end of the paragraph without gagging. The new sign next to it said “This is not a climbing frame, no children allowed”. Really, what else could it be?
We’ve had fast free internet all day, Skyped with Emma and Darcy and chilled out all day.