I have decided that I need to write more than one post every week for a while. There is so much going on in our lives these days that I feel like my Friday blog post is just about the sights and not the substance of our lives. I want everyone to know how we are doing as well as what we are doing. And so, what I have decided to call my Wednesday Write-Ups, will continue until either our lives get boring (who knows… it could happen) or I just have nothing else to say.
Since my last post on Curacao’s beaches, we have traveled by plane to our new home for the next month or so. The flight, I should say flights, from Curacao to Lisbon, Portugal took a total of 24 hours. We had layovers, just long enough to run from one gate to the next, in Dusseldorf, Germany, Zurich, Switzerland, and Palma de Mallorca, Spain, before finally alighting in the charming and lively city of Lisbon.
Unfortunately, we left a part of ourselves in Zurich, we realized as we waited for our bags at the baggage claim area of Lisbon airport. All of our luggage and our stroller got left behind. It was frustrating to say the least, but we handled it well, and felt blessed to find out that they had already found our luggage at the aforementioned airport, and would deliver it to us the following day at our hostel. The problem was that we were stuck wearing stinky, dirty clothing, plus we had not brushed our teeth in more than 24 hours. I kept wondering why there seemed to three feet of open space around me as I walked about, and then I realized it was probably my putrid less than fresh breath and body odor. The moral of that story is that if you have a problem with personal space, you should just skip brushing your teeth and showering or applying deodorant for a couple of days.
I was wearing a skirt, tank top and flip flops. Zoë was wearing her favorite elephant pajamas. Chad was wearing shorts and light shirt. We walked out of the airport to a cold blustery spring day and took a taxi to the hostel that would be our home for the next 5 days. It actually felt really nice to not be carrying 100 pounds of luggage, Chad and I realized how great it would be that someone else would have to carry our bags to our new place. Yes, we were both trying to be positive, while suffering somewhat severely from jet lag and trying to talk to each other through our hands so as not to commit bad breath homicide.
We checked into our luxury hostel right in the thick of downtown and the tourist district, called Traveller’s House and they have it right: it is luxurious… which made my very natural odor seem even that more wretched. So we dropped off our carry-ons, tried to freshen up the best we could and headed to the nearest market, or mercado, to buy some much needed hygiene products. After getting everything we needed, we settled down for some dinner at an outdoor eatery almost right outside our hostel door. We shared some steak and fish with potatoes and rice, not the best food we have ever had, but a vast improvement over the food in Curacao. We were too tired to go get clothing for the next day at the H&M a block from the hostel (thats right! I am in H&M heaven! I have one a block from me thats 3 stories and another one about 10 blocks away that is 5 stories! Try not to be too jealous…I know it’s tough) and stumbled back to our room to finally brush our teeth. What a great feeling it was to have clean teeth.
We went back to our room and all three of us went to bed around 8pm and slept peacefully until 9 the next morning! I cannot tell you what an awesome thing that was! Chad and I had assumed that Zoë would be getting used to the time difference and would keep us up until the wee hours of the morning, or that she would wake up and want to play half way through the night. But no! She slept from 8pm to 9 am, the longest she has ever slept in her life without waking! And since then, she goes to sleep around eight every night and sleeps until at least 7 am. This time change seems to have agreed with her! Thank you God!
So far this week, we have walked around downtown Lisbon and tried different restaurants, they mostly serve the same fare (lots of seafood and steak… yummy!), but each one has its own slight differences and it’s fun to try them all. I have located two Starbucks in the area and have still been able to enjoy my Chai tea lattes. I know Chad is going to be chagrined with me for talking about Starbucks. He really likes to go to the local cafes, but he drinks Americanos (or as they call it here “American coffee”), which you can get anywhere, but it is difficult to find good chai tea lattes. And so I get a Starbucks every day sometimes, everyone has their guilty pleasures right?
The thing that I love about Lisbon is the architecture and the cobbled sidewalks and streets that make it known to me that I am away from home. I am in this amazing, colorful, old city. It blows my mind that I could live in a building built in the 18th century here, not just take a tour through one, but actually LIVE in one! Two things remind me of home, the hills of Lisbon remind me a lot of the hills of San Francisco. The weather here also reminds me of home. Hot and breezy during the day followed by cool evenings to clean the air and give you a chance to wear your light sweater and jeans.
On Thursday we move into a large studio apartment on Rua De Liverpool for the next month or so. The apartment has amazing views of the city as it is on the 4th floor (all stairs too, no elevator…my legs are gonna be gorgeous) and has a balcony overlooking the hills of Lisbon. I cannot wait to post pictures and tell you more about this city that already feels like (a new and exciting) home! I really am falling in love with Lisbon. I really am looking forward to sharing this journey with all of you! Talk to you on Friday.
Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds. James 1:2