Not to Put You Off, But These Things We Have Learnt
Just to tell you that although we are having a ball, there are some difficulties with all this travel in our second year. Not so many
Medication I now get it all via the internet! Sometimes it gets lost as we move before it arrives. Expensive
Hairdressing, it helps when you can speak the same language as the hairdresser. My last haircut was done with no (little communication) when I tried to explain what I wanted the hairdresser pulled a fat face and continued.
Do not expect postal systems to be the same everywhere.We had an annoying experience buying some vitamins online. We could not find what we needed in the Portuguese chemist. I ordered what we could not find plus some other stuff late in November. On the 7th December they hit the customs at Lisbon. Many emails later which all asked frustrating questions in Portuguese, that we could not answer because we do not have Portuguese identity numbers etc. we now have our vitamins they arrived on 3rd March. We grabbed a taxi to pick them up from the post office assuming it was the main post office quite a distance away. We were dropped off 2 minutes later at the local post office!!! Another one for the stupid things one can do when abroad!!
We are organising to leave on 31 March and head off to Arles France for a month we travel via a day in London, thanks to our visa difficulties. I thought that will be good we can stock up on a few things, no we cannot we will be in London on Easter Sunday probably the only day of the year that almost everywhere will be shut. I very cleverly have ordered a few things online to come to Portugal. Now any sane person would have learnt from my experience with the drugs, but no I think paper and ink cartridges will not be subject to customs scrutiny and they are not…… they are sent by Portuguese courier. The first day he decides he does not have the address information. The second day he comes (we think) in the 30 mins we are out. So, I write to the Courier company saying what is the issue is my address not correct or what. The next day I get a note in the post. We have been out all day as I told them in my email. The next day I phone and get told he will leave the parcel in the depot in Faro with an address. I check the Faro address either my spelling is so wrong or it does not exist. I get an email saying the parcel will turn up that day. According to the tracking it is going nowhere, so I ring again. I get another address to pick up the parcel different from the first. Checking this address, it does not appear to exist. I decide to go to the depot in Albufeira, I leave Ross at home in case. At the depot I am told they cannot ring to see where my parcel is because it is lunch for the next 2 hours. I am also told that the delivery is so bad they do not want to handle the deliveries as everyone gets mad with them. Another lady tells me she has been chasing her parcel for a week and still does not know where it is. I go home….. Today I see on the tracking that the parcel is at the warehouse where ever that is. We are now going to be away for a week so will have difficulty picking up a parcel. Life is not easy. Well we went out to pick up the parcel. Taxi to the station (9€) train ticket to Faro (3.25€ each) taxi to Warehouse (38.30€) pick up parcel. It's pouring so rather than sightseeing we return train ticket to Albufeira (3.25€ each) Taxi to the apartment (9€) so 69.30€ later I have my good worth £22, I see a problem here. Another lesson learnt the hard way.
Travel is tiring and i feel guilty doing nothing. Doing nothing is important for my health. We must rest sometiome
Just so you do not get the wrong idea I would not change what we have done for anything and am looking forward to the next year or so. I cannot wait to see what adventures we have. I hope you are happy to follow them with me as the retelling is fun. I just feel it is important to balance the magnificent times with the few stressful difficulties all of which are surmountable with fortitude.
What does not kill you makes you stronger after all.