Obrigada Portugal

24 June 2013
Hello

Olá. Bom dia a todos. Saudações de Portugal!

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The three amigas…

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The beach (playa) is Bonita.

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Last night we stayed with one of Kailey’s dads really good friends here in Lagos. He is married with three beautiful daughters. They live in a beautiful and spacious home only 5 MINUTES from the beach! Isn’t that incredible…right now it is 9:15 monday morning and I am the only one awake. I am twitching from head to toe with excitement to just go lay at the beach. Wake up, wake up everyone! This girl has an engagement to uphold with the beautiful sand and water of the Portuguese beaches.

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Lagos is such a beautiful city, I am so lucky to be able to spend so much time here!

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Portugal is beautiful… We spent all day on the beach soaking in the rays of the huge sun in the sky. We took a little boat over to one of the famous beaches here and spent the morning swimming in the salty water and lying out on the soft sand. After several hours lounging and laughing on the seashore we headed off to browse through the markets. Portugal is not like I expected it to be at all. Right now I feel like I am on an island off of the coast of Greece. All the houses are beautiful white with mediterranean coral and teal colored roofs. The streets are paved with a type of flat white cobblestone and they rise up and down in elevation as the charming beach town sits on a series of hills. Lagos is a very clean city with very polite people. I am very interested in the conversations I hear between people and have been using my Spanish to try to understand what people are saying. Kailey explained to me today that Portuguese people understand Spaniards much better than Spaniards understand Portuguese. For this reason I want to start studying Portuguese as soon as I can and then finish up learning my Spanish…or maybe even learn Spanish along side my Portuguese. How fun would it be to be able to speak Portuguese with my Papa! Oh! I can hardly wait.

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We took a little fairy across the harbor to the beautiful beach where we spent our afternoon. It felt so good to relax after such a rigorous two weeks at Oxford. Mmmmmm, I love the beach!

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Portugal must love cats…Here is a series of “cat boxes” that several wild cats live in. There was food and water out, so someone must be looking after them. It is so sweet that people here find it important to take such good care of even there animals. I have been impressed with how clean the city is. The people here really pride themselves in beauty.

Kailey has already been helping me learn many words in Portuguese and she readily corrects the Spanish words I try to use. This vacation has been incredible and we still have five more days of it! Woohoo! I have been practicing my Portuguese with Jorge’s eight year old daughter Lucia. She spells a word on a piece of paper as I try to pronounce it and guess what it is. She then points to it in the room and pronounces it correctly several times so I can copy her and get a hang of saying it. It was quite a fun game and I learned a lot of new words. I am really serious about the fact that I want to learn Portuguese. Knowing Portuguese, Spanish, and French would be such an advantage in the world today and it would be nice to be able to communicate with so many people around the world…especially considering the fact that I love to travel so much.

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Do you like my gypsy pants? They are quite the rage her in Portugal. You can find them everywhere in all colors, shapes, and sizes. They are actually quite cute and very unique. I think I may have to buy some before I leave…they would fit in perfectly with my wardrobe for Cambridge, don’t you think?

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This is a famous Portuguese bread, called Pao Com Chorico. It is a type of sausage bread that is actually really good. Thank you Kailey of “culturing” me with such great food.

Christina made us a lovely dinner tonight with sopa (soup), peixe (fish), legumes (vegetables), batatas (potatoes), cerejas (cherries), morangos (strawberries), and pessegos (peaches). The famous fish dish in Portugal is called Bacalhau (dried salted codfish) and is amazing! Here in Portugal there are nearly a thousand ways to make it, crazy… It was a very, very good meal and I enjoyed trying to listen to the conversation that was being held in Portuguese. To me the language just sounds like a lazy and slurred version of Spanish. As I learn new words, I find that they are usually very similar to Spanish words without the ending being enunciated. My two years of Spanish has been very helpful even here in Portugal. I really think that if I could stay here for a few more months I would have have a very good grasp on the language. How fun would that be! I learned several Portuguese phrases today that I am going to say to my dad the next time I talk to him.

Portugal é bonito. (Portugal is pretty)
Gosto de Portugal. (I like Portugal)
Quero viver em Portugal. (I want to live in Portugal)
Quero casar-me com um português. (I want to marry me a Portuguese man)

Pretty good, eh? I have been learning lots of new words over the past couple of days, but I seem to forget most of them when I go to sleep. To combat this I have decided to write down the new words that I learn and review them in the morning. Soon I am going to be a native Portuguese speaker!

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Kailey’s dad was born in Portugal and she has been able to visit several times over the past couple years. This is a restaurant where her and her family always eat when they come to Lagos. She says it is one of her favorite restaurants in the city. It serves all kinds of fresh fish, such as sardines, salmon, cod, etc… The seafood here is incredible.

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A sample of the menu here in Portugal…

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Portugal has very, very good food and lots of it. What I love about Portuguese cuisine is that it is all pretty healthy so you do not get that icky heavy feeling after eating a good meal.

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Kailey and I shopping away in the markets that fill the town center of Lagos… Beautiful white washed shops with red roofs and blue doors are everywhere. This place really is incredible. Kailey bought some Gypsy pants, and now I am hooked on them too. I finally found an ATM that would accept my card and I was able to withdraw some money to purchase things with. Now that I am armed with some cash…l am going to go crazy and buy some beautiful and unique accessories from Portugal to remember how much I adore this place.

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The streets of Portugal are beautiful. I do not even know how to describe how beautiful and unique they are from anything I have ever seen. There is a lot of culture and tradition in each piece of every stone, brick, and tile. It is an incredible feeling to see and be in a place that has so much history and tradition. I love it.

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Kailey was so sweet to offer a helping hand to this elderly lady. She helped her carry her groceries to her home a few blocks down the way from where we were going. Seriously, my friends are incredible.

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More photos…AW!

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I never want to leave this beautiful place…Can I just take it with me!

Beijinhos. Tchau!

2 thoughts on “Obrigada Portugal

    1. Love you grandma and grandpa! Can’t wait to share all my adventures with you once I am back home 🙂

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