“We plan our lives according to a dream that came to us in our childhood, and we find that life alters our plans. And yet, at the end, from a rare height, we also see that our dream was our fate. It’s just that providence had other ideas as to how we would get there. Destiny plans a different route, or turns the dream around, as if it were a riddle, and fulfills the dream in ways we couldn’t have expected.”
– Ben Okri, Author, Poet
“Everything popular is wrong.”
“The longer one hesitates before the door, the more estranged one becomes.”
– Franz Kafka
“Perhaps her faults and follies, the unhappiness she had suffered, were not entirely vain if she could follow the path that now she dimly discerned before her, not the path that kind funny old Waddington had spoken of that led nowhither, but the path those dear nuns at the convent followed so humbly, the path that led to peace.”
W. Somerset Maugnham
“Sigh no more, ladies, sigh no more,
Men were deceivers ever,-
One foot in sea and one on shore,
To one thing constant never.”
– William Shakespeare
“People are more than just the way they look.”
– Madeleine L’Engle
The world is grand, awfully big and astonishingly beautiful, frequently thrilling.
– Dorothy Kilgallen
I couldn’t agree more with Mrs. Kilgallen…
“To sit in the shade on a fine day and look upon verdure is the most perfect refreshment.”
– Jane Austen
“Walking is a virtue, tourism is a deadly sin.”
– Bruce Chatwin
“I must be a mermaid, Rango. I have no fear of depths and a great fear of shallow living.” – Anaïs Nin
“I cannot endure to waste anything so precious as autumnal sunshine by staying in the house.”
[Notebook, Oct. 10, 1842]
“He had a theory that musicians are incredibly complex, and know far less than other artists what they want and what they are; that they puzzle themselves as well as their friends; that their psychology is a modern development, and has not yet been understood.”
– E.M. Forster
“Her heart was a secret garden and the walls were very high.”
– William Goldman, The Princess Bride
“I heard the old, old, men say ‘all that’s beautiful drifts away, like the waters.”
– W.B. Yeats
“The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.”
“That night was a dark day. Of course, all nights are dark days, because night is simply a badly lit version of day, …”
– Lemony Snicket
“She had always lived her best life in dreams. She knew no greater pleasure than that moment of passage into the other place, when her limbs grew warm and heavy and the sparkling darkness behind her lids became ordered and doors opened; when conscious thought grew owl’s wings and talons and became other than conscious.”
– John Crowley
There was a time I had a large collection of photographs I’d taken of doors from wherever my travels had taken me. It took me years to accumulate. Last year, when my house was robbed and my computer stolen (along with all of my photographs) I thought my crazy door collection was gone for good. Months later, while walking the streets of Barcelona, I considered that the loss of my collection and computer was a good thing. Not only did it teach me that material things are just that….material and gone in the blink of an eye, but it also encouraged me to continue with a new collections of doors around the globe.
Although I’ll never get a chance to meet my home intruder, if I did, I might thank him for the lesson given of impermanence….and a new collection to start.
“Ol’ man Simon, planted a diamond. Grew hisself a garden the likes of none. Sprouts all growin’ comin’ up glowin’ Fruit of jewels all shinin’ in the sun. Colors of the rainbow”
– Shel Silverstein
“Why did you do all this for me?’ he asked. ‘I don’t deserve it. I’ve never done anything for you.’ ‘You have been my friend,’ replied Charlotte. ‘That in itself is a tremendous thing.”
– E.B. White
“If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you’re mis-informed.”
– Mark Twain
From my favorite book of all time, The Old Man and the Sea…
“Fish,” he said softly, aloud, “I’ll stay with you until I am dead.”
– Ernest Hemingway
“But, soft! what light through yonder window breaks?
It is the east, and Juliet is the sun.
Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon,
Who is already sick and pale with grief,
That thou, her maid, art far more fair than she.
Be not her maid, since she is envious;
Her vestal livery is but sick and green
And none but fools do wear it; cast it off.
It is my lady, O, it is my love!
Oh, that she knew she were!”
– William Shakespeare
“The impetuous creature–a pirate–started forward, sprang away; she had to hold the rail to steady herself, for a pirate it was, reckless, unscrupulous, bearing down ruthlessly, circumventing dangerously, boldly snatching a passenger, or ignoring a passenger, squeezing eel-like and arrogant in between, and then rushing insolently all sails spread up Whitehall.”
– Virginia Woolf
A perfect description of what life is like on the tram. Although I enjoyed riding these little gems, one must be very quick to do so.
“We fall in love because we long to escape from ourselves with someone as beautiful, intelligent, and witty as we are ugly, stupid, and dull. But what if such a perfect being should one day turn around and decide they will love us back? We can only be somewhat shocked-how can they be as wonderful as we had hoped when they have the bad taste to approve of someone like us?”
– Alain de Botton
“I look at everything. God gave me eyes and I look at women and men and subway excavations and moving pictures and the little flowers of the field. I casually inspect the universe.”
– Irwin Shaw
“Men do not quit playing because they grow old; they grow old because they quit playing.”
– Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.
“Friendship is a precious thing, Sayuri. One mustn’t throw it away.”
– Arthur Golden, Memoirs of a Geisha
They sat outside on a small make-shift bench laughing and enjoying the warm evening. When asked if I could take their photo they straightened up a bit, making sure to pull their dresses down properly and graced me with beautiful smiles while they giggled to each other. I was reminded how important the women in my life are. So this photo is for all the women I am fortunate enough to call my girlfriends and family….
“There are two powers in the world; one is the sword and the other is the pen. There is a great competition and rivalry between the two. There is a third power stronger than both, that of the women.”
– Muhammad Ali Jinnah
“Poverty is the parent of revolution and crime.”
Here I found no pretense.
Here I found neighbors filling the small bar housed next to the neighborhood soccer field to watch the game together – children laughing.
Here I found a better representation of life in the city of Lisbon than anywhere else.
Here I found authenticity and I suppose, a sample of Portugal’s own 99%.
“There are such moments in life, when, in order for heaven to open, it is necessary for a door to close.”
– José Saramago
The first post from Lisbon, Portugal, or anywhere for that matter, should be a door. After all, upon entering a new place, you have to open the door first.