She’s back!

May 7, 2007 at 8:14 am (Uncategorized)

Hello world! I’m back. The trip was great – way to short but still fabulous. Here are a few notes written in real time as I wrote it down with pen and paper (anyone remember those?!). 

The flights
CT to London: Long! But I do know I can go without smoking for more than 12 hours. Tough but true. I may yet be able to quit soon. Couldn’t sleep at all because long legs and airport seats just don’t gel.
London to Lisbon: This must be punishment for all the bad things I’ve ever done in my life. A baby yelled her lungs out in my row (how can such a small person make so much noise?). Bad. Then her mom decided to change her. Right there. Very bad. And if that wasn’t enough to piss me off royally the guy in front of me moved his seat to the back so I had my chicken with a side-serving of knee. Lekker.
 

London

In one word: awesome. My friend Mel took me on a whirlwind tour of the city and also got a chance to meet the lovely Lion with the beautiful blue eyes. If Mel ever gets tired of her lucrative job in the City she could become a tour guide.
One weird thing about the people here though: they never smile. Anyway, bottom line is one day is not enough. I want to see more. I’m definitely looking into it when I get back home. 

Portugal
Who gets lost in a hotel? Me. The floors are complicated and I think they do it just to spite people. And the breakfast dishes are not my friend. After dragging myself out of bed and making my way downstairs I proceed to spill half the muesli dish on the communal table. Fortunately the two nice English gents pretend it happens to all of us but I knew they were laughing at me. Hell, I was laughing at me! It’s not that difficult to be dof on the other side of the world, it seems.
Their coffee is excellent. Really, really good. It gets me through the morning after having a) mess up at breakfast (b) eat alone at breakfast (c) practically fall asleep at breakfast.
The good brew also helps me cope with the shock of my lunchtime excursion. A ham and cheese sandwich (without crust nogal) costs about R30…and I don’t even like cheese. I’d go on a diet here if only to preserve my wallet and not my figure. But they have cheese on everything so I drink lots of coffee to drown out the cheesy taste and texture.
It’s cold and wet and I can’t seem to find a decent-looking pebble for my pal Al. I can’t explore much of Porto because of rain and lack of cooperation from the hotel dudes but from what I can see it’s small and old, kinda like PE – mostly industrial with a few nice touches here and there. The residential areas are quaint and reminds me a lot of Bo-Kaap; all narrow cobbled roads and brightly coloured houses.
Books
Thanks to the annoying habit of not being able to sleep well in beds other than my own I finished three excellent books. Read
– The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini if you want to shed a tea or two, or three, or four…seriously, have the tissues handy.
– Smacked by Melinda Ferguson if you want to really see how badly drugs can screw up your family. Harrowing, even more so because it’s a true story by a SA journalist.
  The Secret History by Donna Tartt if you want a glimpse into the dark world of rich, intelligent students. And if you like the kind of books that’s a bit of a mind-f*ck.

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7 Comments

  1. madamm said,

    WELCOME BACK TOBY!
    The blogosphere was deprived, I tell you, deprived!
    Lovely to hear you had such a great time…I’ve been climbing mountains like Hansie Slim! See you soon…
    MRSM

  2. tbhanks said,

    Thanks MrsM. Lovely to get such a warm welcome back. But now that I’m here I have to catch up on all the loveliness I’ve missed out in your world. Best I get reading now.

  3. batman5172 said,

    you ate cheese??? OMG

  4. tbhanks said,

    Yes, believe it friend. I had no choice because they drown it all in cheese. Ok, just thinking of it is making me naar now.

  5. batman5172 said,

    hectic bananas, you like really went from one extreme to the next ;o)

    I suppose you’re totally off cheese now hey?

  6. cara said,

    sounds like the coffee was the highlight…glad you’re back, missed the blogs, luckily had mrs m to keep me entertained in the meantime!

  7. tbhanks said,

    Thanks Cara! Mrs M is indeed a wonderful source of information, education and entertainment. I’ve tried to read your myspace blog but for some reason I can’t (is it locked?)

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