Sunday, June 30, 2013

Albufeira, Portugal and Seville, Spain!!!

This morning I went on an exploratory run with no water and GPS... Hmmm... Mistake! Ended up out about 4 miles in 90 degree heat, dying of thirst and knew I had at least 3 miles to go to get back to the hotel but didn't know how I would get back. Prayed that I could find water along the way... Found a house with some people just getting into their car to go somewhere (only house for miles it seemed ). I said "agua" and did the sign language to show how desperate I was. The guy went in the house and brought a whole gallon of drinking water out with a glass. I downed 3 of them and said, "obrigado!" profusely and was on my way. I had run through a large golf course near the coast line and by a river teaming with birds of all kinds that I've never seen in my life. Then I found some sandy roads going through farm land and sand dunes. Then I finally found a paved road that took me to a beautiful beach which had a long board walk that I took back to the golf resort and then to our hotel. Phew! I'm not sure how far it was but it was approx 1-1/2 hours of running in the heat. Good practice for Hood to Coast! Thank you Lord for allowing me to benefit from Your provision in spite of my lack of forsight and planning!
After morning exercise, we showered, had our breakfast of fruit and homemade granola that Grant made and packed up once again. On our way out of town, we stopped at Aunt Inge's vacation homes for nostalgia's sake and took some pictures. I then decided to wonder down the little road to the "Praia Azul" (Blue Beach). It was hot but beautiful and the water and waves looked so inviting! So we decided to jump in the waves and do some beach combing for just about an hour before driving over to Seville, Spain. The water was so refreshing and it was wonderful to play a bit in such a beautiful place! We were so surprised and tickled to find some beautiful shells also which we had never before found on a beach anywhere :-)
Our next excursion involved driving around 2 hours to our destination in Espana--Seville!!! After parking in a underground garage, we carried all our luggage quite a distance (maybe about 1/2 mile) to our bed and breakfast hotel. We were welcomed by our very gracious and jolly host and hostess who treated us to fresh squeezed orange juice and lemonade and gave us a Google tour of the city and recommended some restaurants and sights for us to see. It was helpful for us especially since we only have about 4 hours more to see the sights in the morning (Monday, 7/1) before driving back into Lisbon to meet Fountainview in the evening. They start their filming on Tuesday! These few family days are quickly coming to an end. But we have much much adventure still ahead!
We found a quaint little restaurant with a great view but terrible food ;-) you win some and you lose some... And had a brisk evening walk around the city to see all the beautiful architecture lit up. We observed that there is a very active night life both in Portugal and in Spain... Maybe because it's so hot during the day. When it's cooler at night, people come out in droves. Looking forward to discovering more in the morning and then travelling through the mountains between here and Lisbon.
Thank you for your prayers specifically for us being able to find and meet the Fountainview group in a timely manner! Good night :-)
Enjoy the pictures below of today's adventures!

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Made it to Albufera, the town my late Aunt Inge lived for many years....

Wow!  Today was amazing!  After a morning run along the sea cliffs right out from our hotel in Burgou, we ate breakfast in our room and headed out to explore the formations of rock arches and caves near Lagos, Portugal. We found some amazing ones as you will see in the pictures below. 

We've learned how to say "thank you" in Portuguese now and a few other words. For the most part, people are quite jolly here!  Seems to be a pretty laid back culture in the Algarve region so far :-) 

We've found some salads, pastas and Indian curries so far at a couple restaurants we've visited.  Yesterday, on our way down to Burgou, we found a great fruit stand where we purchased a watermelon and another honeydew-like melon, some oranges and nectarines.  Yum!  Discovered they grow all these things locally as well as lemons and limes which we will be enjoying in our water in the morning.  After dinner last night, we wondered down to the waterfront and found a gelato shop.  They had some interesting flavors, one of which was fig/almond.  Wow!  That was a treat for the taste buds, for sure.  Then this morning as we were taking our last walk around Burgou, we found the trees that grew those figs and almonds.  Figs and almonds are also local crops here as well.

We arrived to our hotel around 3:30pm today with the thought of leaving our things in the room and then heading out for a hike.  But while we were checking in at the hotel, we discovered the sea cave boats that take people for tours through the sea caves.  The last tour of the day was to leave at 4:30pm and by the time we called to check on them it was 4pm.  To our surprise and delight, they said if we hurried down to the marina, we could still make that last boat!  So we hussled as fast as we could, snacking on apples and rawnola bars as we went.  We made it just in time before the boat pulled out for the cave adventure!  It was incredible!!!!  A once in a lifetime experience that we will never forget!  Pictures are below.  Enjoy! 

Tomorrow as early as possible, we will go find the houses where Aunt Inge used to live and host holiday makers for so many years.  Then we head to Seville, Spain where we will spend only the evening and Monday morning exploring before we will need to travel back to Lisbon to meet the Fountainview group.  Lisbon is where the filming/concert tour starts.  Hoping to be over jet lag by then and be able to deliver Tiffany to her group in a healthy and happy state :-)

We have much to be thankful for!  This family time is precious and we are savoring it for soon we will have to share Tiffany with the Fountainview group where she will be playing an important part in their filming project of "The Great Controversy" DVD.  Bryan, Grant and I will travel along side they as much as possible to support in every way we can as well.  Please pray that we can meet our  deadlines and that divine order will be what governs every project that we or Fountainview embarks upon.  There are so many unexpected things that can happen and obstacles that could get in the way.  But we know that this is God's project and He will get us all through it step by step as we trust Him!