Scenes from a Lisbon Grocery Store

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Tuk Tuk Ride Through Old Lisbon

This was so much fun! A little hairy at times, but fun.


First Impressions of Lisbon, Portugal

Well, we’re struggling to overcome rather intense jet lag, despite our best efforts to mitigate it along the way, but we’ve still had a chance to start forming first impressions of Lisbon, Portugal, from the environs around our hotel. (Confession: we were so wiped, even after trying really hard to do “all the right things,” we power-slept until 1:30 this afternoon…ugh!)

Everyone we’ve met thus far has been nothing short of hospitable, friendly, and even — sometimes — intrigued at meeting someone from as far away as the Pacific coast of Canada. Everyone, that is, except for the furniture sales guy in the mall, who claimed to have family “somewhere” in Vancouver…lol! (He had nice furniture on display, to be sure, but gave us a good laugh with his non-stop, classic sales lines!)

Some of the little things we’ve noticed:

  • many people speak English
  • some people speak English extremely well
  • everyone we’ve met has been very respectful and eager to please
  • they are very proud of their city and are pleased to have a chance to talk about it
  • the fish and seafood is amazing
  • their wine is really nice, too
  • food presentation is an art form, not just a practical way to get slop on on a plate
  • their coffee is not only delicious, but also is cheaper than water
  • they serve wine like we serve water
  • a really good bottle of wine is about 6 Euros, or $7-8
  • groceries are an amazing (low) price compared to home
  • so many of the shops in the mall are just like the shops at home (which is almost disappointing…but not quite…): Timberland, Columbia, Guess, Godiva…
  • some of the shops are a knock-off brand name “adapted” from familiar ones, such as Women’s Secret (that one made me chuckle)
  • they don’t use concrete; they use a type of tile on the sidewalks everywhere
  • the women dress well, and somehow navigate incredibly bumpy sidewalks in the highest heels you’ve ever seen — without breaking both their ankles, knees and hips all in one fell swoop (as I would do, for sure)
  • traffic is crazy, and feels just like home…
  • the wind really whistles through here, more like it did in Chicago than it does in Vancouver
  • the wind is warm in the afternoon, but a lot like Victoria’s chilly ocean breeze in the evenings and early mornings (bring a sweater!)
  • jazz music is everywhere… in the hallway of the hotel, in the coffee shop, in the mall, outside stores… everywhere!



Hotel in Lisbon, Portugal

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