Roughly one year since our far eastern journeys around the Orient, and a decidedly “trimmed down” amount of allowable leave remaining in my favor due to last years “excessive borrowing,” Julie and I agreed upon continuing to feed our travel itch, yet in a manner which still maintained employment upon our return to Austin (as any hint to a 2nd annual extended expedition was met with harsh words of discontent from those encompassing jobs more important than mine). Thus, as an alternative to 2 months abroad, enjoying the ridiculous value of 3rd world travel, we chose instead to try our hand at something a bit less time-consuming (i.e. 3 weeks) and a tad more “developed” (i.e. expensive, fancy, toilet-paper-flushing-abilities).
Luckily our selection of a potential destination did not involve hours upon hours of navigating inflight magazines in hopes of finding inspiration from tiny dots and the occasional stars (although I do enjoy the casual perusing of top surgeons around the nation, all conveniently located near a Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse). Instead, a suggestion was made by several of our close friends from Austin, all looking for an escape from the fairly “mild” summers we experience down in Texas. Alongside the newly-married duo of Ben “FTB” Carpenter and Katie “Just Call Me Jesus” Sharpiro Carpenter, as well as our favorite Cuban immigrant, Gabe “I may need a home if our future POTUS has stubby-fingers and an orange-tinted face” Mears, the decision to visit the tapas-inspired/lispy-tongued city of Barcelona was chosen. And since no Soskolne-inspired trip can only visit just one locale, the appendage of a conveniently-located Portugal was added to the mix as well.
Arriving into the capital city of Portugal after a tearful farewell to work & other household responsibilities (damn you year-long siding project), we embarked on 5 days in Lisbon, a city of which neither of us knew much, yet had heard of due to the fact that we are alive, and not residing in a state that ends in “ama” or “ansas” (sound it out, you’ll get them eventually). Despite our initial “limited knowledge” of what truly exists in this faraway land, lucky enough, the internet exists (Al Gore shoutout), and so do thousands upon thousands of reviews, recommendations & travel tidbits. Thus, an itinerary was developed, married-couple-friendly backpacker establishments were researched, and a peak into the piggy bank was explored.
Described as contemporary, yet romantic, renaissance-inspired yet gothic, Lisbon is not your typical city in which to write sarcastic quips, or draw attention to eccentricities which do not exist in the good ole US of A. Instead, it is clean, proper, polite, and almost every other word which causes me to stare blankly at a laptop unsure of how to compose an entertaining blog post (thus the 3 introductory paragraphs). As a result, instead of channeling my inner Rick Steve and throwing excitement in every which direction (fraud I declare you, fraud!), instead I highlight some of our favorite non-photogenic moments:
All in all, we were pleasantly surprised by our time in the city of Lisbon. Maybe due to the fact that we were immersed in true European culture for our first time since college (hurray for cafes, churches & squares) or possibly a result of the excitement around Brexit (HAHA LOL WTF UK), regardless, Lisbon was a great introduction into our 2 weeks to be spent within Portugal.
Onto the pics: