As part of getting my bearings in a city I prefer whenever practical to walk, as convenient as the Metro usually is, it doesn’t provide the same geo-memetic link I get from pounding the pavement.
So on a freakishly hot (a humid 27 degrees for Autumn) Monday I decided a walk to the park.
I had made my way down from Soccoro past Baxia through the entertainment hub of Rossio, with its signage and hoardings that could not have changed much in the last 100 years and its fantasticly dystopian sci-fi buildings.
This opened onto the stretching grand avenue, Avenida da Liberdade, it was modeled on the grand avenues of Paris in the 1800’s and it shows.
Trees provided shade and kiosks provided refreshment while I made my way up the gentle (as it gets in Lisbon) incline towards the Maquis De Pombal statue and column.
More about Maquis De Pombal and why he’s such an important figure in Lisbons history later.
I had arrived at Parque Eduardo VII, which was commissioned to celebrate the political ties between Edward the VII and Portugal during his visit in 1902.
By this stage even the flies that had been following me since the Rossio district were showing concern. I was a sweaty mess.
Conveniently there were plenty of park benches to take a moment to mop the sweat from my brow, take a gulp of water and reassure the flies I was not yet dead.
Finally, I had reached the summit of the worlds gentlest slope and took some commemorative selfies to preserve the moment.
I spotted in the distance some of the museums I had intended to visit but that I already knew were shut on a monday, next time I might take a cheat and use the metro. After taking a moment, surveying the majesty of the park looking out towards Baxia and the harbour it was time to walk the 5 kms back home.
By this stage even the flies had abandoned me.