from Messines to Silves, 29,2 km

Coffee in a café across the street, mandarins from the supermercado and we are on the road again.
A bit overcast. Soon we arrive at a lake that's actually dammed river and it accompanies us quite some time. Before the dam is a picnic area. We react to first benches. Further would of been a bit nicer ones with tables. An ant struggles with a piece of bread. The climb starts after the dam. It lasts long in the midday heat. Many pairs of tourists walk the other direction. Clean, in white clothes, without backpacks. When we have rammed through some thicket to get under the shadow of a lonely tree at the top the tourists drive back with atv-s. They're doing it wrong! Or then, who doesn't know how to have a vacation, us or them? From under the tree is view towards layers of mountains.
The trail sinks into eucalyptus forest. It buzzes around as if we were walking in a beehive. We sit on the way and eat nuts. Some tourists on horses come. One of the horses remembers clearly that there have not been any nut-eating tourists before and decides to turn around immediately. After some fuss the tourists are still escorted down the road.
Silves is a huge city, with a suburb called Enxerim. There should be a cheap accommodation. It is but it's full. Weird, until now we have been the only tourists in town. What are they doing here? The next accommodation contains an old lady with a two months old baby. She has hard time understanding that we don't want to share a room although it would be cheaper. We remain firm and get very large rooms for 30 euros. I count my toes. All are still there. Nails too. These were taped to the toes especially tight today.
It seems that we've missed the bus so we hitchhike to town center. Already the second car abruptly stops, the driver happily trying to speak German as he drops us in front of a huge supermarket. Very many things. And very many people. We need something for tomorrow's lunch. So we walk around and test each apple. Too heavy, too heavy, ok, this is good. There's also a center with restaurants. We pass the first because Sara is vegetarian and the concept of vegetarianism is not well known in Portugal. Back to the hotel with taxi. Full moon, frogs and grasshoppers outside.
from Alte to Messines, 19,9 km
from Silves to Monchique, 31 km

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