Day out in Bragança - followed by Thunder Bolts and Lightening, very, very frightening.

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Europe » Portugal » Northern » Braganca
June 23rd 2014
Published: June 24th 2014
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Forgot to mention yesterday. Bob had to swerve the Tandy to avoid a 1metre long big fat green snake which was in the road as we got further into the National Park. That has made us quite careful of where we put our feet. It reminded me that when we were in Portugal on a fly-drive holiday in the late 1990s we were also in a National Park close to the Spanish border, a pretty wild area. As I stepped on the grass by the car to get in, something bit me on the foot. Don’t know what but by the time Bob had started the car my foot was double size and by the time he was a mile down the road my ankle was the same and it was rapidly swelling all my leg. We raced down to the next village, found a doctor and had to wait 30 minutes as it was lunchtime. I spent the 30 minutes in a hotel loo with my foot under the cold tap at the sink. Finished up with an emergency doctor visit (we were rushed in), a jab in the bottom and a very sore and swollen foot for a good 24 hours. I have always suspected it was a snake as I was pretty sure there were two holes !

It could of course just have been a Black Widow Spider. I’ll never know but I still remember that it did Hurt !

For the record we have not seen any more snakes.

Kisbee has been sitting neglected in the Tandy garage since we arrived in Portugal so looked very pleased when we let it out today for a trip to town. About 8km to Braganca, easy ride as the road was not busy. We managed to find a garage and fed it some fuel and then found a spot to park near the castle.

Of course we have managed to visit on a Monday which is the day places tend to be closed in Spain and Portugal and sure enough the castle itself was indeed closed.

Not a problem, there was plenty to see without going inside as the castle is in an entirely walled and turreted little town and is itself a very castle looking castle, if you understand what I mean. We had a lovely walk round. The sky was blue, though we started to see some grey clouds. We walked most of the way round the battlements and looked out across the hills which surround Braganca in all directions. I especially loved to look down on the terracotta pantiled roofs of the old streets which are built round the castle.

Had a nice stroll back to the scooter through some well planted gardens and managed not be quite overcome by the incredible perfume of the lime trees which lined the way.

Back down one of the very steep and cobbled roads into the town proper we found a café and had a coffee and sheltered from a little shower. The grey clouds would keep popping over but then went again leaving blue sky..

We searched in vain for somewhere to have lunch. Quite a number of cafes with groups of people, mostly men, sitting outside drinking coffee but we didn’t find anyone eating or see anywhere with a menu.

Then we had an inspiration when we saw a sign to a shopping centre. We went inside and just what we wanted, a bit of a food court. We ate in a Pizza Hut and it was good.

Back down the hill to find the scooter in the main square and back to the campsite, only just in time. The grey clouds had been gathering with a few thundery rumbles. Just in the door of the Tandy and the clouds dropped some very big wet drops. Not for long though and we ventured up to the campsite bar for food as fridge stocks now very low indeed.

I accidentally ordered Bob a Steak rather than a beefsteak and he had extreme difficulty eating it. Too thick, too rare, too chewy and no taste. My salmon was fine !

The thunder of earlier in the day had been rumbling on quietly all evening. Around midnight it turned into a full scale storm. Heavy rain of any kind is not fun in the Tandy as it sounds so loud on the roof. Thunder and lightening of the sort we had for about 2 hours was just plain scary. Each flash lit up the valley below like daylight and the thunder cracks frequently followed immediately after the flash, meaning the fork lightening was right above us. We were really rather pleased when it eased off and we could go to bed. Even though sleep was still difficult as the rain was so hard and noisy.

Campsite = Cepo Verde just outside Braganca

Our rating = 7.5 / 10 (would have been 8 if pool had been open)

Price - an astonishing low ACSI price of €10

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25th June 2014

PC politically correct
Your card arrived this morning for which thank you! Of course you missed out on one from me by travelling abroad yourselves. Love R xxx

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