Part 2 : The 'Found' Log:
On the 3rd occasion we arrived back at the campsite after a long hot day in Lisbon, and decided to try and find it from the lower road behind the campsite. This was moderately successful, but there were no easy paths up the hill from the jogging track, and the distance on the GPS started increasing as we passed below it. We then saw a steep, almost 50% bank going up, where it looked like youngsters had been sliding down, so we struggled up to the top and found a reasonable path heading in approximately the right direction. We eventually reached some more narrow paths, and as we neared the location, which we thought was in a very quiet, remote part of the hillside, a young couple came towards us from the woods - no GPS in hand. After they had gone, we found the cache which was fairly obvious, under a conspicuous (to geocachers) pile of bark and branches. We moved away to write the logs, when another person approached through the bushes and passed going downhill about 15 metres away! Getting busy!!
Then, right on the path an older man appeared with a younger barechested man behind him, and greeted us and started to explain that he was trying to trap songbirds. As he wasn't carrying anything this seemed strange, and the younger man looked very awkward! The younger man then started looking in the pile of branches where the cache had been, but neither had a GPS, so we thought it was lucky we had it in our hand. While we were there another young couple came along the path where Myriam was talking to the men, stopped and listened to what was being said, looked towards the cache location then turned round and moved away. They had no GPS in their hands either!
The two 'bird hunters' moved on and we wrote our log, and were just about to replace the cache when they appeared again. The older one then started a weird explanation about some people in the area coming here to kill chickens and perform voodoo, so we made our excuses and headed off in a circle, hoping they would go away. After 5 minutes we came back and found them in the same place.
We realised that as it was getting darker, we didn't want to wait to replace the cache where they were already suspicious, so we called the owner and explained, and he kindly gave us permission to drop the cache at another location and send him the new coords.
We quickly found a suitable spot, nothing special, but as I was bending down to put the cache under a rock, I felt a sharp pain in my eye, as a thorn from the bush had gone up behind my glasses, and scratched my eyeball. Lots of profanity and pain, but eventually I navigated back down the hill with one eye!!
Later with no improvement we went ot the Emergency department of a Public Hospital, and had some ineffective treatment, so the next morning, still suffering and not having slept, I decided to use my geocaching knowledge, and contacted Prodrive, (well he is the owner of the cache!!) to take advantage of his local knowledge of Lisbon and to see if he could recommend a good opthalmologist. He couldn't have been more helpful, and within an hour he had arranged an appointment for me at one of Portugal's top Ophthalmologists. The doctor was excellent, and soon had me sorted, and if anyone needs a similar recommendation for an eye doctor, then please contact me for the details!
Thanks to Prodrive for the memorable cache, and even more for the help and sympathy with my subsequent plight. That is what geocaching is about - meeting and making friends with others with similar interest all over the world. I will never forget this cache, and also - a personal record - this is the longest cache log I have ever written and the first time I have had to edit into two parts to avoid the 4000 character limit!!