Sunday, March 29, 2009

Regatta, Races

This last week, the last week before the 2 week Easter vacations, was a bit crazy. On Thursday night I went to a disco at 11:30 and stayed out till 5 am, slept for a few hours, and then went to a regatta in Cascais. The disco was fun, but I'm not crazy about night life here in Portugal. The regatta however, was amazing! Much to my surprise I placed 2nd out of 12 boats. There was very little wind and I think I may have done so well on a fluke, but it was great to be out on the water all day in the sun and warmth, however tired I may have been. The same day Maria, Tiago, and Ines left to go on vacation in Andorra and ski, which I was not permitted to do because AFS has a policy about finalists trips. Today, Sunday, I participated in another running race, a 10 km through Lisbon. And now I am in vacations from school till the 13 of April.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

10 little things I really miss, 10 things i really love

10 little things I really miss:
1. mustard! the mustard here is very different
2. olives
3. this list is all food! hah. big breakfasts
4. not "dressing up" for school, or at least just throwing on a tshirt and jeans or sweatpants and calling it good
5. music!!!!! actually this is a big thing i miss. the radio is good, but my family rarely listens to music.
6. homework instead of notes to study
7. smaller tests
8. running partners
9. straightener. my hair looks slightly crazy.
10. eating with hands more and good salads.

10 little things I love:
1. the sun!!!!!
2. the beach
3. my own bathroom (that is not having to share with 2 sisters and a cat)
4. fresh food
5. there are always cafes on every street corner. you can always buy little cakes (bolos) or cafe (coffee)
6. emotions are so much more in the open, for example two kisses on the cheek are typical for greetings and kissing or crying in public are not stared at like the US
7. the bar in the school. not literally a "BAR", but like a snack cafeteria. its got the best criossants and sandwiches for less than a dollar
8. the train. i can go pretty much wherever i want by just walking to the station
8. the old feeling in the streets and in lisbon. everything feels centuries old, just like it actually is
9. people always take care with their appearance, which, although i dont always enjoy it, makes people seem like they actually care
10. 10 minute break periods in school. originally they were annoying, but now i think they are perfect to relax in the sun, talk with friends and recover from brutal tests.

Friday, March 13, 2009


I feel like I'm finally on my feet here in Portugal. The language is still not easy, I can't understand fully unless the people talking speak slowly, but I can communicate fairly well. Or at least get my point across. School is a pretty dull for me, but I usually spend it studying Portuguese, doing sudokus, or talking with classmates.
These past few days have been beautiful! The weather has been about 70 or 85º each day and very sunny. I went to the beach for lunch, and after that little amount of time and sailing today my face is slightly sunburnt! But it feels so good to finally get some sun. I also have a 7 km race on the 21st of March and a regatta on the 27th of March.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

My Host Family

Maria, 17 years old and studying Biology in her last year of high school

Ines, 16 years old and studying economy in her "junior" year

The family (by the way all these pictures were taken in Tanzania)

My host brother Tiago, he's twins with Maria, 17 and studying economy in his last year of high school

My host dad and mom, Jose and Cristina

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

In Viseu

Iglesa Geronimos

Inside the Church

The tomb of Vasco de Gama

Typical tiles of Portugal. There are tiles on many old buildings

Castelo São Jorge

A taste of Portuguese

The view of Lisbon from Castelo São Jorge. The bridge is the exact same as the Golden Gate bridge but in Lisbon
Inside Castelo São Jorge in Lisbon
The view of Cascais, the city nearest to Estoril from the Paredão
The Paredão