An International Day

Today was a truly fun day filled with giggles, laugher, adventure, memory making, and camaraderie spent with our dear friends, Claudette and Lil, from Ottawa. For those of you who don’t know who they are……….

We have been friends/family since May of 1997 when I showed up at their front door applying to rent their advertised apartment! We became fast friends, travel companions, and have remained so since I moved in and Marc and I still rent and live in the same house as they do. I’ve been trying for years to convince them to visit us in Portugal and here they are.

We left home early to collect them in Tavira with the goal of driving to Vial Real de Santo Antonio, hoping the ferry over to Spain (Ayamonte) for a walk-about and lunch, then a visit in VRSA, and finally, a few stops on the return trip home. It all went as smoothly as planned.

Wandering around in Ayamonte is always pleasurable. It’s very different architecturally from Portugal and the tile work, distinctly different. It’s a tourist town given the proximity to Portugal but it’s still authentically Spanish, you feel and see that immediately after arriving.

A good walk about creates the need for a good lunch and we finally settled on a small terrace at the corner of a busy plaça where we sat in the hot sun and enjoyed lunch, chatter, and laugher.

At this point we were ready to head back to Portugal but still about 40 minutes for the next ferry which meant another bit of wandering was in order.

We had predetermined that one in VRSA we would go to a favourite Pâtisserie and relax with a coffee and “light dessert” before wandering around. For those of you with a sweet tooth, these shots are just for YOU!


In and out of stores, up and down streets, all fun and at some point, exhausting. We aren’t spring chickens as you know….well except for Lil……so we needed to give our feet and rest and head onward for a couple of additional stops. But not before Marc got to make a purchase…

I had wanted to stop at Cacela Velha, which is a tiny village located on a hill at the eastern end of the Ria Formosa that was once a “dead town” but revived and has become a summer/weekend place for the lucky few who managed to secure property there. It’s quite pretty. We enjoyed a lovely walkabout.

One last stop on the way home…..a pottery place we’d been wanting to poke our noses in.

What a grand and glorious day we had and there’ll be a few more in store before Claudette and Lil return to Canada. Then, as luck would have it, a generous invite for dinner at the Kean’s…… opportunity to enjoy their company, have a great meal, play a game of cards and most importantly, getting to give Dawn a farewell hug as her time here has come to a close. Safe travels tomorrow.

And so goes the adventures of the Canadian Boys in Paradise!

8 thoughts on “An International Day

  1. Great photos of you all in Spain. Kate and I spent Monday there, and I’m pretty sure we sat on the very same bench as Claudette and Lil! Kate heads home tomorrow also, and Susan flies in. Out with the young and in with the old


    1. Aren’t you the bad one calling your sister old!!! LOL.


  2. What a great day in Ayemonte and ARSA – such a fun day trip. Your meals and desserts looked so good. To end the day off with dinner and cards with Pat, Gary & Dawn – bonus!


    1. Twas indeed a grand day. We are trying to give Claudette and Lil reason to come back!!


  3. Fabulous day! Reminded me of our day in Spain when we visited you and Marc. Only everything was closed in Spain that day, if you recall. Lol


    1. Yes, we were telling them about that yesterday, and our trip up the river. You need to come again to hike and be here when the weather is better, which of course is hit and miss everywhere these days.


  4. What a terrific day on every account! I am sure Claudette and Lil will not stop smiling until hopefully their inevitable return! Really nice photos that brought back some memories; so glad the weather was beautiful for your venture to Ayamonte and ARSA…. I was jealous of Marc seeing him buying knives, the best knives ever as mine are so well used!!
    Loved all the various photos of the four of you and the singular boat struck me…really liked it. I could see it in a frame!
    And, dining with the Keans and company…a perfect ending to a perfect day! 🤗


    1. Yes, another wonderful day full of memory making under rout belt. I too was happy with the photos from the day, keepers!! I think the “girls” are loving Portugal.


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