Portugal – Lisbon Streets & Garden

Traveling in a foreign country is definitely peculiar because we generally find ourselves out of our comfort zone. If there is a language difference and a number of significant cultural differences, this can be even more pronounced. After a single day in Portugal however, we felt more or less at ease.

One of the first things we do when we arrive at our hotel in a foreign area, is to secure a business card with the name and address of the establishment. If we then get lost, we are only a taxi ride away and we can just show the card to the cab driver. We took two cabs during our stay in Lisbon and both experiences were positive. Interestingly, as we learned, the customary tip for taxi drivers in Portugal is to round up to the next highest Euro. At the time we visited, the Euro was about $1.21 USD (+/-) which means the largest tip would be $1.21. Of course, tourists can tip more if they like.

Lisbon is a hilly city. It is known as the City of Seven Hills so be prepared to walk uphill sooner or later or to hail a taxi.



As you can see the street above was a bit steep as we headed toward the Jardim Botânico da Universidade de Lisboa (The University of Lisbon Botanical Garden).

We walk and then we walk some more when we visit new countries or regions. We love to walk around town and get a good sense of the city or area we are visiting. Like most major cities, there were McDonald’s restaurants in Lisbon. As you will note in the center of the shot below, the golden arches are rather muted. No large red background here. We stepped inside to note the differences between American McDonald’s and those in Portugal and while we did not purchase anything, it was interesting to note that they served coffee in ceramic coffee cups for patrons who had their coffee in the restaurant.



Again we were walking downhill which we know from our hiking will be an uphill on the return trip.

We have visited many gardens in our travels and I have to comment that this particular garden is not what I would call a display garden. It appeared to be more of a research garden. There were few dramatic landscape areas and only a scattering of flowers at the time we visited. We were a bit disappointed, but found some sections of interest. The tree below had an amazing display of air roots.



The garden had resident cats probably serving as mousers. This tabby on the roof was spotted in several areas and had a friend or sibling that was remarkably similar.



On the walk back to our hotel, we encountered this happy drainpipe festooned with a floral array. I had to return the smile as I took the picture.



Pictured below is another interesting trash/recycle bin we encountered.



Street vendors made a variety of commodities available especially huge strawberries and the fruit dealers seemed to be popular with the commuters.



The main thoroughfare in Lisbon is the Avenida da Liberdade (Liberty Avenue). It is a very wide street with pedestrian walkways separating the lanes of traffic. The walkways are paved with an intricate design that we were led to believe were copyrighted and used just for the city of Lisbon. There were special work crews adept in repairing the swaths of walkways and maintaining the integrity of the artwork.

These pieces of intricate artwork were created with the use of limestones referred to as calçada Portuguesa (Portuguese pavement). The cobblestones are made into small squares and placed to create a design in black and white. Care should be taken when it is raining as these tend to be a bit slick when wet.

The “Avenue” is a great place to walk and window shop. There are also nice areas with water features, plants and restful benches. It is worthy of a stroll if you have time.



Our home base in Lisbon was near the Marquis de Pombal neighborhood which seemed to be a more or less central location relative to areas we were interested in investigating. It was a nice, but long-ish walk to Rossio Square, the Tejo River and shopping areas.

A Statue of Marquis De Pombal, the Portuguese Prime Minister from 1750 to 1777, is one of the highlights in this area of the city.



As you can see, the statue is in the middle of a large rotary which can be very busy at times, but there were plenty of traffic lights and ample opportunities to cross the roadways.

Here is a more picturesque shot of the statue. This is a popular stop for tourist buses because of its central location and proximity to the Edward VII Park (more about the park in a following post).




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Read previous posts about our adventures traveling in Portugal and Spain:

Portugal – Alfama District, Lisbon Part 1

Portugal – Alfama District, Lisbon Part 2

 

Read more Hiking and Exploration posts HERE


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All original content on this blog is copyrighted by Jeffrey B. Ross with ALL Rights Reserved. While reference links back to JBRish.com are appreciated and encouraged, please acquire approval for any reproduction of original content from this website.

©Jeffrey B. Ross – 2018 – JBRish.com



Video Trailer – Kedi and the Street Cats of Istanbul

Generally speaking, I am a dog lover, but I do like cats as well. I have had a couple of cats as pets and I was very fond of them. I don’t think a cat loves as unconditionally as a dog and they have a tendency to restrict their emotions. I don’t currently have any pets, but I have friends with cats and dogs and I enjoy being a “grandfather” or “uncle” to them. I play, go home and they stay. What could be better?

The Internet reports that a documentary, Kedi and the Street Cats of Istanbul, will be in theaters soon and I thought JBRish readers would enjoy viewing the trailer. There are certain countries around the world that have areas that become known for their affinity toward one animal or another. You may have heard that there is a cat island in Japan so I guess this is a special bond various cultures develop.

 


To See more Videos posted on JBRish, Click Here

Capture Mood and Emotions in Photography

As the readers of JBRish know, I am not a professional photographer even though I really like photography and I appreciate the creativity of experienced professionals and more advanced amateurs.

I was reading through a number of blog posts the other day and I came across the article below:

8 Tips for Better Pet Photography

Although I am not generally interested in pet photography, I do like cats and dogs and there are some wonderful pictures included in this article. The main reason I am writing about this essay, however is because of the following picture which was part of the article.

young woman with pet dog

Doesn’t this photographer do a wonderful job in capturing the love and emotions being shared between this dog and the owner? This picture speaks to the viewer and conveys so much. The photograph is simply remarkable!

If you are interested in pet photography or if you would just like to view nice pictures of pets, I encourage you to read it:

8 Tips for Better Pet Photography



This picture is copyrighted by the original photographer with all rights reserved!

Kitten Kaboodle

My wife and I have had a couple of cats as pets and I must admit that dogs ARE more lovable and warm and fuzzy, but there is still something quite attractive and mysterious about cats.

Our last cat was Kitty Carlisle (KC) named after a popular TV and game show personality of the 1950’s – 60’s. I guess I am showing my age a bit here. At first when we mentioned the name of the cat some people who were a bit older would smile knowingly. Now we rarely get any recognition whatsoever so it is just a cute cat name.

Here is a picture of Carlisle enjoying her favorite pastime and perhaps a favorite of every cat!

Kitty Carlise, our cat, napping

KC didn’t always sleep. Sometimes she just rested. Here she is in an open fall window enjoying the last warm breezes of autumn. Yes, that is a towel under her. You wouldn’t want her to lay down on a hard, uneven window sill would you?

Kitty Carlisle resting in an open window.

If you happened to walk in on her and disturb her routine such as when cleaning herself while sitting in the papasan chair, she would stare you down.

Kitty Carlisle staring from the papasan chair

One of her very favorite times was when my wife would bring a towel straight from the clothes dryer to assure that she had a warm cozy place to…what else…Nap!

Kitty Carlisle under a warm towel straight from the dryer

We also enjoy cartoons, drawings, poems and other creative works featuring cats and lucky for me, I live with a quilter. If you are not familiar with Laurel Burch, she has some fantastic, multi-colored and often nearly psychedelic designs. As luck would have it, I think she liked cats too.

Here is one of her squares of a cat family with a very loving kitten.

Laurel Burch Cat Quilt Square

Momma cat and Tom have a young one of their own. Please forgive the wayward thread.

Laurel Burch Cat Quilt Square

This conservative cat family seems very organized and I guess they have a routine.

Laurel Burch Cat Quilt Square

This block pays homage to multiple births among cats.

Laurel Burch Cat Quilt Square

This family group seems a bit blue!

Laurel Burch Cat Quilt Square

This is cat couple and child seem very much in love!Once again, please forgive the wayward threads.

Laurel Burch Cat Quilt Square

Although Kitty Carlisle is no longer with us, her spirit remains strong within us and we still have a feline affinity, as you can probably tell.

 


JBRish.com originally published this post

Scaredy Cats … It’s a Cucumber – Surprise

Apparently cats are terribly afraid of cucumbers. The video below shows cats being surprised and/or scared by finding one so close to them. According to a recent article on Gizmodo, my source for this video, some knowledgeable “cat people” feel that scaring your cat this way may cause psychological damage. Anyone who has ever owned a cat understands that cats don’t need any further assistance in this area! So…pet owners beware – Don’t Try This At Home!

NOTE – All of the cats in the video are scared while eating or drinking. Could this be related to scaredy-catness; i.e. The Hunger Games?

A Cat on the Hat While Filming a Cat Travelogue

Japanese photographer Mitsuaki Iwago obviously has a passion for cats and one cat in particular. He has created a travelogue series featuring cats from around the world. In the clip below, he is filming in Okinawa, Japan where enjoys an up close and personal moment with a very cute kitten.



From the YouTube Video Notes:

This is the scene from
Wildlife Photographer Mitsuaki Iwago’s World Cats Travelogue
http://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/english/tv/special/index130815.html
Island Kitten Befriends Animal Photographer
http://lovemeow.com/2014/05/island-kitten-befriends-animal-photographer/