Portugal – Day 2 – contd..

After the walking tour, I visited the main church and then went in search of some food! Found a lovely vegetarian place which had the model of taking whatever you want from the buffet and pay by weight. And I also tried the Portuguese wine alongside.

Nectar of the Gods

After getting refreshed, I decided to move on and use the remaining daylight to explore a very interesting place – a church without a roof! Would that mean a direct connection to the Gods that live high up in the skies? Let’s find out what happened here. There used to be a small convent – the Carmo Convent before it was turned into a monastery in 1389 by the military commander of the king. After years of worship, one day in 1755, an earthquake on the Portuguese coast, the church suffered major damage. Since then, some repairs were done but it never got restored to its former self. Today there is an archaeological museum there. The side building which was originally the convent, is now the headquarter of the Republican Guards. The monastery hosts some exhibitions. I regret that I couldn’t see the light and sound show called “Lisbon under stars” that was running then – I wonder now whether I couldn’t get the ticket or was just too exhausted to wait until nightfall.

Carmo Convent
If Gods are in the skies, then what better place than a roofless church for communication?

One very interesting piece of modern Portuguese history took place in this area – the Carnation Revolution. It was a bloodless military coup in 1975, to overthrow the authoritarian regime of Estado Novo. A restaurant worker Celeste Caeiro, who was returning from her work, simply handed out carnations to the soldiers who then put them in the muzzles of their guns. Other civilians followed suit and thus, the event was named the Carnation Revolution.

Scenes from the Carnation Revolution

After the history lessons, I decided to get some dinner. Found a mall, and a place that had interesting wraps made from Tapioca!

Tapioca Wrap for Dinner!

Everyday on my way from the hotel to the city-center and way back, I came across this statue. It’s the statue of an interesting writer – Fernando Pessoa, who became famous AFTER his death! He wrote prolifically but never published anything major in his lifetime.

The Writer at the cafe – Fernando Pessoa

After that, as far as I can remember, I went back to the hotel to give some rest to my aching legs, that took me up and down around the hilly Lisbon the whole day. The next day was going to be in another beautiful place and I needed to get my rest to be up in time for that. Ah, I remember now – that’s why I didn’t stay for the evening event at the Carmo Convent! Marvelous neurons!

Ending this post here. Will be back with the story of the next day soon..

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