I'm teaching another travel writing class for Catapult, starting Feb 29

Pretending to belong

One of my favorite things to do in foreign cities is, maybe surprisingly so –
running errands! Things that drive me crazy back home in New York, such as waiting in line at the post office, grocery shopping, or getting my shoes fixed become somehow exciting when I’m in a new city. So today I went out with a few shopping aims in mind – buy Dr Hauschka holistic face cream (I’m a sucker for all-natural products), a non-toxic spray for eliminating the ants that have invaded my kitchen, a Portuguese language course book, and a pair of cheap slippers. In search of these banal things, I wandered through half the city on this warm Tuesday afternoon (it was 18 degrees in the sun!), had a coffee break on Rossio square, zipped through a couple of shopping malls, took some snapshots, bought salmon fillets to make for dinner… Back in New York, it would have felt like I was striking things off my ‘to do’ list. But in Lisbon, it felt like discovering a city the way its locals live it. No frills, just going about my life as if I actually belonged here. I was even asked for directions, twice in one day.

Blog Comments

hey there lisboeta,
your entries are really so nice – writing and pictures. and it feels strange because i can recognise the things your describing.
be in touch soon about the visit, looking like april if that’s good for you…

Hey there Vik,

So lovely to get a comment from you, and glad you like my entries. We’ll be away on a trip till 8 April so mid-month is cool for your visit. Would be great. Hope Berlin’s treating you well, darlin.


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