(20 miles, 1 hour 55 minutes moving)

I took advantage of the big breakfast again this morning, this time talking to the pilots I had met last night, and two German girls, one of whom had absolutely amazing English.  When I complimented her on her “awesome English”, she quipped back “You too!” I hope that my English is good after nearly 28 years of practice…

When I got to the ferry terminal and tried to purchase a ticket, they told me that I was at the wrong terminal and I needed to go about a kilometer up the road.  This confused me because I really thought that the research I had done on the internet the night before had told me the name of the right terminal.  Apparently I can’t read Portuguese even a little bit.

I biked to the other terminal up the road, bought a ticket, and decided that I also better hit the ATM in case it was a while before I’d come across one again.  As soon as I finished my transaction, I started hearing bells and horns ringing and I realized that my boat was getting ready to leave, with or without me!  I quickly walked/ran my bike up the gangway and got onboard just in the nick of time. It was a quick trip across the river on this catamaran-style ferry and when we reached the other side, it began pouring rain.  This was exactly how I dreamed my first real day on the road of my European bicycle adventure would start out.  I propped my bike under the awning and began the process of putting on my rain jacket and pants, and my water-proof shoe covers in place, and then made sure that the garbage bag “rain cover” for my shoulder bag was securely fastened in place.  I finally figured out how to get the shoulder back attached to the rack with a carabiner holding it tight to the seat-post bag and it felt much more secure (and much better to not have the heavy bag on my back).

I decided that I’m going to have to brave the rain somedays, and it might as well be now, and I was off. The route for the day was pretty easy and I started to get pretty good at navigating the roundabouts. It was only about 20 miles total to Setubal, where I was going to spend my first night camping.  It was raining when I arrived at the campsite and I started setting up my tent on the beach side, but the camp attendant came out and told me there was a chance of strong winds tonight, so he suggested I move to a nice grassy area with a picnic table behind the reception office. I had to wait about five minutes for a break in the rain and then I made a beeline for the spot.

Beach at Setubal

Beach at Setubal

I had the tent up and the bike folded, locked to the picnic table and covered pretty quickly and then I went into the reception area to plug in my laptop and charge my other various batteries. The campsite attendant was so nice that he ran an extension cord out to my picnic table so I could move out there, without my even asking, and for no extra charge!  It got dark at about 7:30 pm and without any more light than my headlamp, I decided to go to bed early. It rained a few times overnight, but my tent kept me dry, and I slept for almost 12 hours!

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