Friday, August 24, 2012

Roadboy's Impressions of Lisbon

Hill's and Azure Blue Water

I didn't know much about the history of this beautiful city before my arrival, but this trip will certainly be the catalyst for me learn about Portugal's capital city.   

After two days in Lisbon - here is what I do know.

I know we arrived at a low tech airport that worked fine.

I know the new airport subway station made it a piece of cake to zip from the airport all the way downtown.

I now know this city is filled with amazing Lisboetas whose daily conversations have a lot of "shhh shhh" sounds in them.

I know Lisboetas are working to preserve a unique culture, music, history, cuisine, and language. It is hard to be "me" when you are a relatively small country sharing many traits and a long border with a huge and boisterous neighbor (like Spain!)

Then there is Lisbon itself. Perhaps more than any city I've ever seen, it reminds me of San Francisco. It has hills, a spectacular suspension bridge, old and new pubic transport working side by side, interesting young residents, stunning architecture, tourists everywhere, and breathtaking views of a lovely bay. 

Hills, Castles, and Rio Tejo Beyond 

So far Miss M and I have walked (and walked, and walked). We have gotten quite lost (I did, she figured out where we were). We have slept all the wrong hours and eaten at the wrong times.

In Lisbon things run on their own well choreographed schedules. They get up early, then work, then stop to enjoy a long leisurely lunch. Then it is siesta. Then back up in the late afternoon. Stores reopen, work goes on. Then they stop, call it a day and go get their families. Around 9 or 10 they are back out strolling. They start eating dinner around 9 or 10:00 PM. Most go back to bed. Many go have some wine and party till 3 or 4. 

Lisbon is alive with tourists by day and Lisboetas by night.

Been working pretty good for them for a long time. No rush hour. 9 to 5 looks kind of boring to me now.

Plaza's and Sidewalks 
are Masterworks in Mosiac Pavement 

Art Meets Function

And of course while Mr. Type A architect is looking at sidewalks, Miss M is pointing out all the little lizards and making me look up to see all the bats zipping through the air as the sun sets.

Bright Funiculars

And Ancient Trams
Ply Lisbon's Many Hills 

Lisbon Glistens at Night

Rich in Plaza's "Pracas"
(Notice the Ipanema Beach Walk Paving Motif)

Then there is the food. Fresh, fried, poached, boiled and canned seafood. Yesterday I had a dish of eucalyptus flavored ice cream(!?)

Today we are off to The Oceanario!

I've done the math. Four days = not even close to enough time to experience Lisbon.

More to come!

Roadboy's Travels ©2012

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