TBT #4 – When I Moved To Portugal

Date: 27th July 2018

I woke up at 3.30am on this day, and it was the day that I was moving to Portugal. Obviously then, I assumed it would be a year-long stint. However, I managed to get myself ready for the trip to the airport by 3.45. My flight was at 7am, and because I needed to actually get to the airport and checked in, I knew I needed to be up early.

I got to Doncaster Sheffield Airport after 5am, and I managed to drop my suitcase off without any welling emotions. It was when I had to say goodbye to Connor that I welled up and started crying.

I got through security, and admittedly I knew it was a small airport, but the waiting area was quite small. It was nice though, I have to admit, and I settled in the waiting area with a bottle of iced tea to quench my thirst. I, however, did not like the toilets. Let’s just say it…the contents of the toilets weren’t the best.

I flew with Flybe on the first leg to Dublin. Flybe is a similar carrier to Ryanair, where it’s pretty much a budget airline, but I didn’t mind it. It was a quick flight over. The flight to Dublin was uneventful. It looked as though a storm was coming in Doncaster, but we managed to avoid it. In Dublin, I managed to get myself a bottle of Club rock shandy – rock shandy is bliss!

Pokemon Go was uneventful in an airport setting either way, but I managed to grab a McDonalds breakfast in the cafe and catch up on the final episode of Metromania season 1. But it’s a ballache when your laptop battery dies and you can’t find anywhere to charge because everyone’s occupying the charge ports, it was a long wait for 12pm to be able to check in.

It gets worse. No sooner had I checked my bag in and gone through security, the Ryanair flight to Lisbon had been delayed for an indefinite amount of time. I wasn’t feeling particularly hungry because of the massive queues to get to the food, so I grabbed a few Butler’s white chocolates and some Toblerone to snack on while I waited. I still couldn’t charge my laptop, and the time passed too slowly. The early morning caught up with me by around 2.30pm, and waiting around in the airport lounge made me a bit sleepy.

However, by 4pm, I was on the flight, at the back of the plane, in the aisle seat. This must be a flyer’s worst nightmare, delay included! Thankfully I was sat near some lovely people – one lass was visiting a friend she had over in Lisbon, and a group of guys were singing along to a playlist of songs and generally having a good time. It made the flight pass so much faster (I’m not the greatest of flyers, honestly).

I arrived in Lisbon by 7pm, and I was picked up by one of the work staff called Rueben. Because I was part of the international program they had, they were able to accommodate me, and the bills would automatically come out of my wages for the month.

I arrived in this freguesia (civil parish) called Lumiar, and it was absolutely stunning! The main neighbourhood I lived in was Telheiras, and it was quite an open area for me. I was living quite close to a Pingo Doce hypermarket, as well as the Jardim Mahatma Gandhi. There was also an Aldi quite close by, too.

So at 9pm I took a short walk to the Aldi, because I needed some small bits to get me through the night – my bottle of shampoo exploded in my wash bag and suitcase – my clothes were safe, and I needed some light snacks and water to hydrate. So I went into Aldi, absolutely scared as hell because my there was a lot that I couldn’t understand, but it was really quiet, which helped a lot.

I was still feeling emotional when I fell asleep, but all I needed was a shower, the view from the balcony, and a walk to Quinta das Conchas in the afternoon to make me feel better.

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