Don't Forget your SUNGLASSES --OO--

The best places ever partied are always the places you vaguely remember.

Have you heard the story of 'The Never Ending Nightlife,' its sequel 'DayLight'?
If not, it is because you spend too much time in your office.
Play with various acts on different stages, have them narrated and directed by someone like Chekhov, and star you and your sisters, or brothers of the night. Whether you are the type to wake up early or stay up late, there are plenty of clubs and bars in Lisbon that will suit your fancy. The downside- you may not want to go to these places everytime you decide to have a twenty four hour party, but more than likley you will end up there. At 6 oclock in the morning Lisbon streets are littered with party goers, you just have to know where to look and where to go, if you want to keep the party alive. Just north of the metro stop Cais do Sodre, there is an inclining street above the roundabout. On either side of this slope you can enter another world of bars and clubs. Sketchy entrance ways and newly born beams of sunlight may not encourage you to go inside, but if to just experience the random side of Lisbon, you will not want to miss these truly local gems. Eighties music and seventies singalongs, share space with blown speakers, sticky floors, mirrored walls, and dodgy people.
By this time of the night/morning, you shouldnt care about the atmosphere, as long as they are selling alcohol and playing music that keeps your legs moving. Expect to pay two euros a beer and five euro for cocktails at these places you hope your mom doesnt catch you in. If you've managed not to loose your diginty and it is seven in the morning, make your way along the riverside west of the same train station to clubs with an average 12 euro cover, even during the week. Dont forget your sunglasses, your smoke crusted eyes will be happy you didnt!



If you love someone, POP THEIR ZITS

Okay, before you think this blog is gross, just read it. Around the world cultures have different ways of showing their affection and displaying emotion in public. From throwing rotten fruit in rural China to sticking your tongue out if you're an indigenous New Zealander. In some cultures showing affection is just plain illegal. For as long as I have lived in Lisbon, I have seen PDA as something of a primal and cultural marvel. Young and old alike can be seen holding hands during a walk in the park, frequently kissing each other, and gazing at sunsets on the banks of the Tejo or beaches in Cascais. Until recently, my foreign friends never understood one particular part of the Portuguese love-story; publicly popping each others pimples. In Portuguese it is called 'espremer borbulhas,' which literally means to squeeze bubbles. Who doesn't like to squeeze bubbles.. (actual bubbles)? It makes you feel like a kid again. If you understand pimple popping in these such terms, it definitely sounds more endearing. Most Portuguese women are addicted to the act of popping pimples on others. Portuguese men often cringe and are not as inclined. However, like proper gentleman, they let their women have at it. Watching their eyes light up with excitement. The anxiety of how much puss will come out of the inflammation and the thrill to spot another. Why in the world would someone want to pop another persons zits? Unbeknownst on-lookers have no idea. Most dont even want to touch their own zits. Other cultures may try not even to look at them and hope they just disappear without a scar. In Lisbon however, it is a courtship ritual. In the metro, or on a bench waiting for puberty to pass them by, love is in the air. Unfazed by germs, bacteria, acne, or disgusted foreigners, we pop pimples in public. When you are in Lisbon and see friends or loving couples bursting each others imperfections, look to your girlfriend, boyfriend, or travel buddy and burst that bubble! Squeezing bubbles makes people feel young again. Pimples are a readily available source of unconditional love and a time for bonding in Portugal. Don't be grossed out, just show your love in Portuguese to someone special.


Good luck getting where the LOCALS are

Look down, footwear of choice for Lisbon locals is the hiking shoe. Walking in this city is not for the faint of heart. Now, look up, hills are the landscape that define Lisbon and gives its' fascination. At all times during a trek around Lisbon you will find yourself somewhere on a mile long hill, either on the top, middle, or bottom. To take advantage of these verandas, the city has in place, some 15+ viewing points. In Portuguese, we say 'Miradouros.' Atop the Miradouros you can expect artisan like vistas of the city. You will see sprawling ceramic rooftops, sun kissed skies and breathe air scented with pine. These alcoves are known mainly by locals and every neighboorhood in the city has winding streets that seem to dead end or has staircases that look like they go up and up, and up into oblivian. Along these mysterious paths are Lisbon's hidden gems. Sun bathed public space teeming with lovers, families, friends, and hipsters, enjoying company and crisp summer breezes that caress the hillsides. Crowds gather daily at Miradouro 'Santa Catarina,' locally known as 'Adamastor,' a look toward the Tejo River and 25th of April bridge. Nearest, to Santa Catarina and situated to see directly into the valley floor and city center is the multileveled Miraduoro 'Sao Pedro de Alcantara'. From the vantage point of Sao Pedro, five other miradouros can be seen. On weekend nights you can hear live jazz in the courtyards while having a cold cerveja served up from cafes located in most of the parks. I would only suggest people training to climb Mount Everest, to walk up and down Lisbon and locate all its' stunning Miradouros. To test this theory I went on a 7 hour walk with my roommate to the most well known of the viewpoints and only managed to see 6. The mission felt like I had journeyed the entire camino de Santiago de Compostela in one day. My suggestion is to see these magnificent outposts by taking the King of the Hills tour with WHTT. You can leave your hiking boots at the hotel and have a local guide drive you up and down (and sometimes on the side) of the city's palisades. After the tour is done your legs are still fresh to dance the night away, or just to walk up the ten flights of stairs back to your accommodation.


Saint Anthony's Eve- Bica Bottle Poppin' June 12th

It is no secret, that the festivities on Saint Anthony's Eve are the worlds best
kept secret. Every small street in Lisbon's historic city center will be filled hip to hip with party-goers. The big decision is where to begin your celebrations. After much deliberation, The Purveyor, has complied a list of hot-spots and a
locals only map, for Saint Anthony guidance. Fun times will be happening everywhere in the city, so be prepared to get caught up in sardine smoke and traditional sing alongs.
Start in my bairro, near metro stop 'Martim Moniz' on Avenida Almirante Reis, then wander your way to the Alfama District early in the day.
Alfama is noted as the eldest of Lisbon's districts and was home to the patron saint that is commemorated this Eve. Bairro Alfama is by far, the best spot for traditional fare today. Get there early in the day otherwise you won't get a seat at a table, or breathing room. The church of Saint Anthony can be found on
'Largo Santo Antonio à Sé.' Weddings that would put Las Vegas to shame will happen here all day. Once you've seen the ump-teen newlyweds and had some grub (sardines & bread), it will be afternoon and that means, drink, drink, dance and drink some more. 21h will begin the Marchas Populares de Lisboa, on Avenida da Liberdade, this must see parade is over before you can make a beer run, so get there a little early for a quick see. Adventurous spiritos should also make it to the streets of 'Mouraria' just north of Santos train station. The finale, head down to the Bica for the best of party central. Here in the Bica, steep, tiny streets outline a procession of partying that only your eyes can believe and bottles of cachaça numbering in the tens of thousands. Some folks say Saint Anthony's Eve is like Mardi Gras. I know it to be better. I would give Mardi Gras a solid 6.5 in compairisons 1 to 10. SAE gets a 9.5. This party gets 3 more points because you can count on; a better party atmosphere, 7 times the 'arraiais' of parties, no violent conflict, more local and cultural interactions, higher quality food, and lower libation price tags. Get your proper partying on Lisbon style and wear comfy shoes. Saint Anthony wants you to stay on your feet all day,night and into the morning of the 13th. You can always confess your sins later.


Hypothesis, Philosophies, and Sócrates

The Portuguese political and economic systems are as complex as any other in the European Union. In laymens terms, there is a president, who is more of a ceremonial figure with little political clout. A prime minister, who actually heads the government and an executive branch, legislative branch, and judiciary branches, who each do their respective jobs. Economically, the Portuguese are capitalist, but preach socialist solidarity.
Currently vying for his second term as Prime Minister after he resigned from the same position in March, Jose Socrates has put his name on the ballot for the Socialist Party. I am sure he is hoping to win. I am also sure you are asking yourself how in the world can someone that just resigned from the position of PM actually believe that he is the countries most viable leader? The basis for his campaign happens to be the same premise of his resignation just months earlier, Portugals' insolvency.
The age of exploration brought the people wealth beyond their wildest dreams. Now, thanks to its EU brethern, Portugal was bailed out of bankruptcy in late March. The bail bond was paid in the amount of €78billion, receivable over three years. Portugal is the 3rd country of the 27 EU states to receive bail money in the last year, totalling a sum of over €300billion. The 12th highest GDP in the world, Spain is projected to jump on the bail out bandwagon later in the year. Bringing the EU cash register to well over half a trillion dollars. Like Greece and Ireland, Portugal had no plan on how they were going to repay this debt to their neighbors or divide it among its industries.
What will more than likely happen? That is the €100billion question.
I can tell you what is happening now. Salary and job cuts in the public sector. In Portugal this means privatization of services that were once preformed by government funded employees, like doctors and other health practictioners, teachers, and municipal workers. So, in reality if you are a doctor that is currently funded by the government it is more than likely that you will be working alongside another doctor that is funded by the private sector and making more money then you, regardless of tenure, merit, or research you have conducted. Self-professed socialist, Portugal is already home to some the lowest working wages in the EU. Not to mention, if you are a retired government employee you can look forward to having your pension cut by 10% if you receive over €1500 a month.
Pause here for recollection. Late 2008 and the U.S. financial crisis. Followed by massive layoffs, job loss, and piles of debt. My hypothesis of all this formidable rhetoric is that the people of Portugal- life loving, warm hearted, and passionate, will remain essentially unscathed by any measures a system may try and tie them down with. Lastly, a big shout out and OBRIGADO to countries like Great Britian, Finland, Germany and China, for paying it forward, as long as someone owes you, you'll never be broke. Wish us luck, porreiro pá.