Real Day 1 starts at maybe 7:00PM EST with me leaving my apartment and heading to the airport for my 11:25 PM flight. After checking in and getting through security in record time, I walked the terminal for a long time knowing I was about to be spending hours sitting on the plane. Once boarded, I pretty much immediately went to sleep. I was woken up at 1AM EST by the flight crew, who were inexplicably serving dinner. It would be 6AM in Portugal, So I personally feel like maybe this wasn't the right time for a meal. I never really got back to sleep after that, but was pretty comfortable as my seatmate found an unoccupied seat with more legroom available and left me our two seats to myself. I was cuddled up with my travel pillow, new noise-cancelling headphones (how did I travel before these!?), and a mask over my eyes. After getting to Lisbon, my plane to Porto was delayed so I did catch a few Z's in the airport, and finally managed to set foot in Porto at about 4:30PM, local time. After spending a couple of hours claiming my luggage, getting a local sim card (best 10 euros I spent the whole trip! Worth it to be able to use as much data as I wanted!), and using public transit, I met up with two of my urban sketching buddies and arrived at our shared airbnb. Let's just say, the owners didn't exaggerate the phenomenal view (the bridge is the famous Ponte de Dom Luís 1).
We walked through São Bento, a very beautiful train station that is just minutes from our home-away-from-home, on the way to dinner.
While at dinner, we had this great view out the window, so naturally I had to sketch it! Colors were a bit of a surprise, since I was working in half-light and using my palette by memory rather than sight. All in all I was pleased with my first sketch of Portugal!
When we got home, the three of us decided we needed to do nocturnes from the upper balcony with a full view of the river. It was heaven. I learned that night that the lights on the bridge are turned off at 2AM (thank goodness I was almost done my sketch anyhow!). Tune in tomorrow for an account of my next day in Portugal!