So there was I sitting on my suitcase again, trying to zip it closed, going through my mental list of clothes, teaching sources, and toiletries. Each time I pack my suitcase I have a mini anxiety attack about all the things that could have fit, that could be in there instead of what I have, what I might be forgetting. Will I have one of those days where I want to wear my grubby old T-shirt? But what about those shoes? They go so good with those pants I brought. Oh, indecisive angst. Each time, though, I get through it with my Minimalist Guide to Packing that I’m still working on following to the best of my ability.
Choking back tears (I hate goodbyes) I hugged my sister in the Logan Terminal and took off to Portugal with an overweight suitcase and a backpack that weighed about the same as me. I still have a lot of work to do. As they say, the best advice is never easy to follow.
After a ten hour journey, at long last, I arrived in Lisbon. I had to walk about a mile and a half with my stone-weighted backpack then wait for about 45 minutes in line at the Passport Check Station. I was hot, sweating, exhausted and extremely anxious. I was about to see Maria again for the first time in three months. Would she have changed? Will I still like her? Will she still like me? After a while of wild and stupid questions popping around my head, my mind went blank. I couldn’t anticipate how it was going to be. An hour and half after I landed, I was just hoping she’d still be there waiting.
And she was. I saw her there standing a bit away from the crowd, scanning people leaving with a look of drained expectation. Then we made eye contact and my heart sped up. She followed me along the ramp with a cheese-eating grin on her face and a flower in her hand. We hugged and it felt like putting on a well worn sweater you’ve pulled out of your winter clothes. We were giggly and nervous, unsure of what to say to one another. It was a strange sensation, but thankfully we both felt the same and we had two days in Lisbon together to find our footing with each other.
In Lisbon we stayed in a nice apartment that was close to the airport. We didn’t do anything the two days we were there except for sleep, walk, talk, and eat. It was a nice buffer to catch up with her and with the timezone.
And made me a first meal to die for: Patacones (Fried Plantains) with caramelized onions and boiled eggs filled with a mixture of tuna, tomato, and the yolks.
While we didn’t do anything, there is A LOT to see and do in Lisbon. It’s a beautiful, relaxing city filled with really hospital and polite people. After our brief visit, it was back to Badajoz to begin our entrepreneurial journey.
This concludes the fourth and final installment of the “Catch Up” series of my blog. It’s been nice recapping the last year with you. I hope you’ve enjoyed it as much as I have.
Now, keep your eyes peeled for these upcoming posts on travel, spain, and food every Wednesday:
A Spanish Christmas
My Favorite Spanish Foods
Adventures in an Academy: Starting my own business in Spain
5 Ways I’ve Become a Better Human Teaching English in Spain
5 More Ways I’ve Become a Better Human
Doing it Live: An Impromptu Trip to the Beach
The Original Alburquerque
The Minimalists Guide to Packing
5 Must-Do’s in Lisbon
Pros and Cons of Living in Badajoz, Extremadura