Alas, I have been, as you frequenters well know, a bit behind in updating my blog with my latest exploits. I realize this and do sincerely apologize. Business has been as usual here. At least for the most part. It is a rare occasion that I fall sick, but I must say, as is the norm with me, I fell hard. These past two days have been miserable. Anyways, I recognize that my writing on here has been of poor quality and therefore feel compelled to share with you my most personal and intimate thoughts that I have diligently recorded in my journal--with a few removals. This is the closest you'll ever come to delving into my personal thoughts, so enjoy this glimmer while you can. (Side note, please excuse the errors in tense and days, for this was written on my way home from Lisbon.)
In short order, I will return to the Knox from a delightfun weekend spent in Lisboa, PT. Unfortunately, that requires a return to 'reality'--at least my current reality as I have known it for the past 9 weeks. In reading Twain's The Innocents Abroad, I have come to appreciate those often overlooked ways of modern travel.
I do love water. And boats as well. But I do believe that 11 days on a boat to cross the pond would grow tedious to even the most ardent sailor. I have become accustomed to quick, painless, efficient and even enjoyable train rides. When he took on the 'polite' french (quite a reversal of roles), it took 12 hours by train from Marseilles to Paris. It now takes just more than 4.
I will also attest that my recent affinity to indulge in writing of more than just day to day actions has also stemmed from Twain's immaculate journal and his claim that it would be worth $1,000 (his era, which I would roughly translate to circa six zeros). So please, immerse yourself with me.
Portugal is a pleasantly picturesque country. I will remark that I have only experienced two cities, but I would place the country as silver winner, as of yet. The large, green, palm tree scattered parks adorn the city and truly maintain the Mediterranean climate, even though the city is situated upon the Atlantic.
Surprisingly, and contrary to popular notion, the city is immaculately maintained. The language was unique, and in similar gait with Spanish, even though it was not of much help. But to a certain extent, I find a uniqueness and a bit of enjoyment in the unknown.
Back now to my ill-attempt to paint a portrait that will never be finished, I must comment on the food. First off, regardless of locale, the country smells of fantastic food. I honestly believe that they make a valid attempt to crop-dust the country with food scented perfumes. I will attest to this fact b y saying that yesterday, while wandering aimlessly through Eden on Earth (Sintra), I could, in fact, smell fresh food being prepared--in a garden.
Last night we ate a spectacularly cheap meal of 9 euros per person. I had trout, cooked and served whole. I must say, if deemed proper, that I did quite an excellent job fileting the damned thing, for not having done that dirty job in multiple years. After dinner, we travelled a few blocks to a renowned Fado house. At least the man standing outside inviting us in claimed it was. At any rate, it was an enjoyable ending to an equally enjoyable trip. The fado music, consisting of guitar (nylon stringer), mandolin, and an upright bass, was exactly what I needed. At first, it was wailing and melancholy and, accompanied by a large woman with a large voice, made for a perfect setting. However, after another round of rusty nails by a not so prompt server, the music picked up in liveliness with quicker mandolin riffs and a booming male bass. We all enjoyed ourselves and our mandatory 16 euro drink minimum. We then left and visited Ben and Jerry's so Ashley could indulge.
With a quick breakfast, I caught the first cab to the airport and, alas, here I am.
So there you have it. It actually included no real thoughts, and therefore was deemed appropriate to share. I just simply know that I could not write that whole thing again in a different way, so why not copy it? I hope you are all doing well.
Post Script: I have included links to my photo albums on the left hand side of this blog for those of you not enrolled in facebook.