Philip arrived on Sao Miguel on Saturday 28th December 2014
‘A week back in blighty and finally some time to put down some thoughts.
First of all I should like to thank you for the organisation put into making my Azores visit so smooth.
I have travelled extensively and my normal airport procedure is to seek out the bus rank and then wander the streets with a lonely planet guide…hit and miss! To be met at arrivals by a smiling face and a Mercedes to whisk me to my hotel was a luxury. I could get used to it.
As for the islands, you were right about the winter weather. The first morning Ponta Delgada was gale swept, the tail end of one of the storms was so exciting. The English Press and the electric company’s fishermen were securing their boats with extra warps and fenders.
The next morning the taxi took me to Sete Cidades. I did the rim walk in ever blueing skies and enjoyed immensely the growing colour contrasts of the easy road. This was very pleasant walking with ample opportunity for my camera. I strolled through the village and took the bus back to town watching the sun drop into the Atlantic along the south coast.
The next morning I ventured to Furnas and took a walk around the lake. The tall cedars climbing into the cliffs and the woodland paths were glorious. Drinking coffee out on a terrace in town I felt the quiet mountain atmosphere settling me. I spent New Year ’s Eve at the Residential Vale Verde and spent a very pleasant evening bathing in the geothermal pools and watching the fireworks from the Terra Nostra Hotel. On New Year ’s Day the town was asleep and after a stroll around the botanical gardens and another dip in the hot pools a taxi took me back to Ponta Delgada for my flight to Sao Jorge, stopping on the way to watch a kite surfer at Sao Roque.’