Thursday, June 23, 2005


When I was about sixteen I went on my last family holiday - to Cintra, where we stayed with an artist friend. I breezed down corridors lined with watercolours, filled disposable cameras with photographs of communist street grafitti, and wrote songs on my acoustic guitar, pausing occasionally to stare meaningfully at the horizon.

This weekend I travelled back to Lisbon for a work conference, and discovered that in a little over ten years my creative energies have dwindled to a general desire to sit around in the sun not doing anything (which sadly was not much permitted) and a more specific desire to steal a golf-buggy and drive into a bunker.

On our trips into Lisbon the coach journey was enlivened by the very charming conference host, who insisted on pointing out every single hut and fishing boat, as well as the highly regarded (but now sadly closed) Lisbon lung hospital ("for tuberculosis").

The weather was wonderful and the air conditioning startlingly efficient (bordering on a bit chilly). Back in my kitchen I am hot and uncomfortable. I would swap their coast for my coast, or my air for theirs. On the other hand, my time is my own and I may sit where I choose. Hurray, then.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I went to Portugal a few years ago and had a great time; is the driving there still as terrible as it was when I went? Can't be much worse.