Sunday, March 27, 2016

March 24-25, 2016: Mt. Pleasant to Lisbon, Portugal

After the last minute touches around the house and breakfast at Hy-Vee Deli we were on our way to Cedar Rapids Airport.  We parked our vehicle at friends who live near the airport.  Our flight left Cedar Rapids at 12:00 noon for Minneapolis, MN.  In Minneapolis we had a layover of what we thought was to be 3 hours, but instead it was 5 ½ hours.  However, on our Trans-Atlantic flight to Amsterdam they made up some of the time so that we were only 30 minutes late arriving in  Amsterdam.  

When booking our flight tickets, it was cheaper to go with round-trip tickets to Amsterdam than one continuous ticket.  So after arriving in AMS we claimed our luggage and re-checked-in for the flight to Lisbon, Portugal.

After re-checking we meet our Dutch friend at the appointed located.  He took us to his parent’s home where we had tea/coffee and a real ‘Dutch’ breakfast of wonderful bread, meat & cheese.  There is something about the flavors of these 3 items together that we just do not seem to be able to reproduce in America.  It has to be #1, the breads and #2, the cheese.

These Dutch friends go way back to the fall 1972. Our children are very close in age, and we have been to see them numerous times and the father has been to see us several times.  The friendship with the second generation has continued.  Their son has ridden bike on RAGBRAI 3 different years and the father one year. 

However, in January 2015 we received a shocking call that the father had a fatal heart attack.  He was Cal’s age.  What shocking news!  With this trip we are finally getting to see his family and grieve with them. 

After breakfast, tea/coffee and fast conversation we went back to the airport to continue our journey on to Lisbon at 12:40pm.  This is Easter weekend as well as spring break for many schools.  Things were busy at the airports, and security was high, especially in AMS.

In Lisbon we arrived at our hotel, Hotel Diplomatico, where a shower was needed after the overnight flight followed by a nap.  Flying overnight takes a toll on the body!  Neither one of us slept much. 

Approximately 4 hours later, our daughter Cherie, joined us at the hotel. After finding a restaurant for our dinner, everyone was ready for bed. 

Photos below are of the Edward VII park and Marques de Pombel monument near the hotel
Edward VII Park

Marques de Pombel Monument

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