it was already 8pm when we left oceanario and we didn’t really have any idea how to get to the 25th of april bridge. each of our google maps was suggesting different transportations and routes, so in the end we decided to take the full package combination of train, metro, bus and walking.
it turned out our travel pass was not valid for train journeys so we took the metro from oriente, and then spontaneously decided to stop at saldanha and take the 727 bus to the bridge. of course, the bus went right past us as soon as we emerged from the metro station. we spent 16 minutes waiting for the next bus while playing spyfall, and then spent another 30 minutes on the bus continuing the game while simultaneously trying to figure out where we had to get off.
in the spirit of things going wrong, the bus dropped us at the wrong location and we had to walk 10 minutes to the bridge, but we got there in the end. it was beautiful. the full moon was directly above it and lights lit up the bridge connecting two cities within lisbon. the weather had cooled considerably compared to the afternoon’s harrowing heat and we could see the cloudless sky full of stars. all day we’d been talking about the bridge and despite everything, we made it. it was 10.30pm, and there was no one around, but we made it.
we sat by the riverbank in silence as music from yee lin’s phone played as a background theme song. i was just indulging in being able to appreciate the incredibly scenic view before me in the presence of my friends, friends whom i have travelled around spain and portugal with for the past 10 days, have encountered many problems and challenges with but have also found joy and gratification with. and i’m not even gonna lie, it’s been a gruelling and exhausting week, but right at that moment, realising the impending future of our departure, i felt nostalgic for what was merely a trip that lasted for 11 days. not even weeks nor months nor years, but considering all that had happened, it most certainly felt like that.
i allowed myself to stare up at the sky with marvelling eyes, allowed the slight breathlessness that comes with realising how big and beautiful the world is and how fortunate i was to be able to take in with my own two eyes the shining dots above me, the reflection of the moon in the water, the chilly salty breeze blowing against my skin, and of course, the good company of my friends.