Taking it easy in Baixa

Because of my sprained ankle, we decided to take it easy today. I worked on a web page in the morning, then we took the Metro down to Baixa, which is flat, for some shopping, some sightseeing, and a nice lunch.

A view down Rue Agusta,the main pedestrian street of Baixa. The stature in the center of the arch is in Praca do Commercio which is Lisbon's entryway plaza on the Reo (river) Tejo.

A view back up the same street from the foot of the statute in Praca do Commercio

We walked, from the Rossio Metro stop, down Rue Agusta to the Praca do Commericio. My ankle was doing OK, so, after resting and people watching, we headed over to Praca do Municipo for some shopping - there is a Lisbo Artisan shop there - and cow watching. A looked at a Portuguese phrase book while my wife looked at pots and tiles. Portuguese is not an easy language for an English speaker to learn. The written form isn't too bad - pretty standard romance language - but the phonemes are very different from English. In the phrase book it had several pages of "this sounds sort of like the English xyz" and "the closest an English speaker can come is.." Fortunately, English is fairly common in tourist areas and Portuguese are friendly folks who will work with you when you try to communicate.

Interesting art in Praca do Municipo

After shopping and cow looking ;-}, we wandered up to Restauradores plaza and then headed down the pedestrian street a block over form the east side of that plaza. There a lot of restaurants there and we picked the nicest one for our last lunch in Lisbon. Tomorrow we are going to Sintra and the next day we leave Lisbon.

The city Hall on the east side of Praca do Commercio
Note the half a dozen cows on this plaza

This evening, like almost every evening, we went to a pastry place for espresso and pastry and, later, since we already had had a big meal, to another restaurant for beer. Then we waked to the train station to check on tickets for Sintra.

Lisbon is now my favorite big city. Everything fits together here: the weather, the people, and the culture all contribute to making this a very comfortable place to visit or live. Of course, the language would be a challenge and there are aspect of this culture which would cause me personal problems, so it isn't perfect, but it is damn nice!

There are now about two hundred decorated cows scattered all over Lisbon as part of the Lisboa Cow Parade 2006.

The Cow Parade Flag flying in Praca do Commercio

A few of the many interesting cows we saw today.