I am the queen of lists, planning ahead & generally all things OCD. So when an unplanned vacation suddenly popped up 3 weeks go it left me nothing but stressed (first world problems indeed). In the days that followed the destinations went from Cape Town, Knysna, Zanzibar to Morocco (I’m dying for more Africa travel). Days later we decided on Portugal & I’m not entirely sure how but I do so love the randomness of it all…
With the destination set, we were finally ready to buy flights (I’d been looking for days) & suddenly there were none. Well, none that weren’t stupidly priced. We moped so much you’d think a close relative had died. I decided to check again just for the heck of it the next morning & they were back 🙂
And then we discovered that my passport expired. Yes really. Twitter folks recommended Randburg Home Affairs & they were right. 4 days later I got a SMS to collect (their promised turn around time is 2 weeks!) & I jumped out of bed to do just that. Major confusion when I arrived as I had also (finally) registered our marriage a couple of days before (changing my surname) but done the Visa application in my maiden surname. I don’t know why I do these things to myself. I spoke nicely & managed to convince them I wasn’t dodgy.
Tick tock… I raced to the Portuguese embassy to do the Visas the same day & in my rush forgot 1 document. A lovely lady assured me I could email it which of course I did just hours later, with a follow up mail a few days later. Silence. A week on I called only to find out she went on leave the day she’d seen me & wasn’t back. I was told to resend the doc. *scream*
Anyway I got the Visas back today ( & they’re not cheap at R728 a piece!) with 2 days to spare. Honestly I wasn’t sure if we were going to make it at all & I wasn’t allowing myself to get too excited (bar of course the Portugal Lonely Planet guide I bought on the weekend). We’re spending 6 days in Lisbon (the capital) & 4 days in Porto (northern Portugal). I’ll save our accommodation dramas for the next post!
Here’s a quick look at the 2 cities…
Aerial view over Lisbon (source)
Porto at sunset (source)
Ok let me stop moaning. Excitement is starting to kick in as I research things to do/see. More soon!