I had set a wake-up call for 6:00am with the intention of getting up with the sunrise and seeing a bit more of Madrid at dawn. Yesterday I had noticed that the light was really nice in the morning, and intended to take advantage of it.
Yeah, like that was going to happen. I was so totally dead from miles of walking yesterday that I barely made it out the door for my 10:00 shuttle to the airport.
After an uneventful 1-hour plane ride (assuming sitting behind a smelly, smelly man during the flight and then having to wait 50 minutes for my luggage counts as "uneventful"), here I am in Lisbon, another city I've never been to before. Since it was lunchtime when I got to my hotel, I tossed my luggage in the closet and headed out to the Hard Rock Cafe...
Turns out this is a fantastic dual-level property with really interesting architecture and an incredible amount of memorabilia stacked from floor to ceiling...
In recognition for their awesomeness in winning "World-Wide Cafe of the Month" back in November, Lisbon has the honor of getting to display an original Jimi Hendrix guitar from his appearance on the Dick Cavett Show in 1969 (previous months were won by Buenos Aires, Lake Tahoe, Dublin, Houston, and Kowloon cafes)...
With plenty of daylight left, I decided to take a walk down to the Tagus River and see the sights. One thing you tend to notice quite quickly is that the sidewalks here in Lisbon are made from beautiful stone mosaic patterns, some of which are quite ornate. I guess when you live here, it's easy to take the sidewalks for granted, but I found myself looking down just as often as up...
The city of Lisbon itself is quite nice. It has a very different "feel" to it from other European cities. Almost Caribbean or something... it's very strange, but in a good way. About the only thing that wasn't pleasant is being pestered every fifteen minutes to buy some sunglasses (Armani! Very beautiful!) or other imitation crap. But that wasn't nearly as exciting as being offered some hash every ten minutes (Hashish! Good hash!). Though all of that pales when compared to some guy who came up to me with a Canon EOS camera in a paper sack...
GUY: Want to buy camera? Very good price!
DAVE: Uhhhh... nope, I'm good.
GUY: Are you sure?
DAVE: Sure I don't want to buy an obviously stolen camera? Yes, I'm quite sure.
GUY: But I give you very good price!
Oddly enough, I was just thinking about how I wish I had my own Canon EOS Rebel with me. I left it back home because I had loads of crap to haul over for work and didn't want to bother with it. Still, my little pocket camera takes some pretty good shots...
Living the jet-set lifestyle like I do (ha!) can make for some strange interactions with people back home. Mostly because nobody is ever really sure of where you are or what you are doing. Like Bad Robert, who just called me as I was writing this entry...
DAVE: (answering phone) Hello?
ROBERT: Dude, I need to get my car to the shop. Can you bring me back home so I don't have to sit there all day?
DAVE: Dude, I'm in Lisbon.
ROBERT: Can you drop by after you're done?
DAVE: I'm in PORTUGAL... I won't be back until Sunday.
ROBERT: (dramatic pause) Oh. I thought you meant like the restaurant.
ROBERT: So how are things in Lisbon.
DAVE: Pretty good so far. I've only been here for four hours.
ROBERT: Ah. Hey... do you wanna know what Ben did to his car?
DAVE: Is it worth the dollar-a-minute this phone call is costing me to find out?
ROBERT: Uh... probably not. Oooh! Call me when you get back! I need to tell you about my new air horn!
And so it goes...
I haven't a clue what I'm going to be doing tonight. About the only things I can be sure I WON'T be doing is this...
Because the only way I could sit through The Sound of Music would be if I was doped up on hash.
Hey! Wait a minute... I might just have plans for tonight after all...
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Portugal looks so pretty! Please, oh please, get doped up and see the Sound of Music. I really want to hear about that experience!
Hehe, the tiles and the dope sellers definitely remind me of my stay in Lisbon! Although I was also offered harder drugs 🙂
Are you a proper veggie or will you eat fish at least? That could be a real treat! Particularly as I thought that Portuguese restaurants didn’t care too much for non-meat eaters. You should also try the sweets they have, particularly the Pastel de Nata.
It seems a shame to walk on those mosaics. They are gorgeous!
When my wife was in Paris over Christmas, she called me constantly from her cell phone, and I was going to be horrified at how much it was going to cost, but my bill only ended up being about $10 extra. It was crazy.
You are AMAZING !!!
Lisbon is a pretty city !!!
(Me, I totally forgot to visit Hard Rock Café… Shame on me !!!) 😀
hash? like the caribbean? super cute sidewalks? I suddenly want to move to Lisbon. 😀
ha! The phone call cracked me up!
The city looks gorgeous. I will have to talk my wife out of France.
Now that you have been to Lisbon, you can complete the circle by going to Macao SAR. Unless you did that first… but based on what I read, I am guessing you have not been to Macao yet.
P.S. The hashish guy is probably the same one my wife and I saw there. Did he also offer you roofies?
Now I’m dying to know if there is a restaurant called Lisbon anywhere near where you live – lol!
That Hard Rock Cafe is stunning. Dang.
Thanks for the awesome vicarious trip! I could almost smell that guy. Was hoping for a vicarious hash trip too, but hey, one can’t complain.
I was wondering what kind of camera you were using! For a pocket camera it takes some lovely shots… is it the same one you reviewed a month or so ago?
I had to laugh at the phone call. I get those all the time. My most recent was when I was in Tallinn. There i am in a gorgeous museum and my phone rings. I’m all, “huh, who’s phone is that, how rude oh SHIT it’s MINE!”.
And it was a dude from WORK. Wanting to know about one particular person’s file I was working on (out of over 250) and what was the status of it. And I’m all “Dude, I’m on holiday, and I am NOT a freaking computer…so NO I DON’T know and how the HELL did you get my private cell number?”
Grrr….I don’t like cell phones.
Lisbon it’s a good place to live.
That my original country !
Haha, that reminds me of when i visited Pisa, the walk up the tower is a deadly crowd of sellers of all fake trinkets under the sun.
Hey, that’s one sexy looking Hard Rock
Even though I know you grrr…HATE the Sound of Music…It made me think about this gal in JTree who I met rockclimbing, her thoughts on drugs were “Get high on life”…THAT may be the only way to make that movie palatable for you Dave ;).