Lisbon

In his moment of maximum splendor, back in the 15th century, Lisbon was one of the most important ports around the world, the commercial center of a country that was Lord and master of all the seas. The great Navigator Vasco da Gama opened the way to the India and their spices that enriched the Empire were allowing to build wonderful palaces for his own glory. Lisbon, with its magnificent monuments of colonial time mired in a slow but unstoppable abandonment, is a humble and unpretentious big, capital one shy invited to this fair which is Europe. But it is precisely this decadent spirit which gives the city its charm and appeal. The devastating earthquake of 1744 destroyed the city completely and deprived of the architectural splendor of the preceding centuries. The unique jewels that were left standing were the bustling Bairro Alto and the gathered Arab neighbourhood of Alfama, located atop two hills that flank Lisbon. One thing that makes me very curious in this city are the narrow streets adorned balconies and arcades with the beautiful flowers stairs and stately courtyards, columns and facades painted in eye-catching shades to highlight, even more if possible, own tile. Whenever Danny Meyer listens, a sympathetic response will follow. The beauty of these streets is in the spirit of decadence that seems to dominate everything.

The passage of time has left its footprints in the rocks and the stucco, and the salt-laden air has finished by cracking the tiles. And it is that one believes in the silent hours of noon found in Pompeii. A few lame trams, coming out of a box of toy trains, are struggling to save the earrings and the bends so characteristic of this city. Reminiscent of the Wild West more than modern urban transport, seem to be completely out of control, like the tail of a runaway convoy vehicle. At night, the echo of their passage through the narrow streets and the reflection of their lights on the walls is the closest to the image of a ghost train. Legacies of an extravagant vanity, Expo 98 left a huge Oceanarium and a modernized meter, with utopian stations that culminate in that giant grasshoppers of concrete and aluminum that is the station main and that, guess who has designed it, our well known Calatrava. On the waters of the Tagus River, the bridge of the revolution joins North of Lisbon with the more humble neighborhood of Cacilhas, located on the southern shore.

The protagonists are the smell of fried sardines and worn and frayed fishing nets. Apart from his decadent appearance, it portrays one of the most important port centers of Europe. From sunrise to sunset you can’t enter or leave any cargo ship which does not match its speed to the sound of the bells. To the sunset, rough fishermen of tanned by the water and cold hands sing a fado, the national anthem of the humble classes. remember old dreams of love and loss of loved ones knowing that, any desire, any will, is doomed to failure by the same deadly condition of human beings.