25 November 2015


Been a while since I blogged, for which I blame life getting in the way. However, I realised that it was time I got back into the swing of it after reading some nice comments about what I had written previously.

It is amazing how many changes there are in just a couple of years. Computers get faster and more complicated with the introduction of new versions of programs that cause untold stress whilst you get to grips with what some man who needs to get out more, considers we all need in our lives when the previous version was perfectly adequate. Phones have become an extension of arms and from what I have witnessed, appear to be what a lot of people view the world through.

We recently had a visit from some friends from the UK and thought it would be nice to have a wander into Lisbon, take the tram to Belém for a pastel de nata at Pastéis de Belém, have lunch at my friend's restaurant, and a general wander.

Granted it was September but we had not calculated for how popular Lisbon has become.  Tourists to the left, tourists to the right, tourists everywhere.  Now I cannot deny this has to be good for the economy, but what struck me was that they all seemed to be viewing Lisbon through a lens and not through their eyes.

I think we had chosen a day when the tour boats had all arrived at once, which probably made it look worse but I was struck by the numbers of tourists, following a guide - raised umbrella or clipboard - in crocodiles with phones or cameras glued to their eyes and wonder how much of their visit they will actually remember visually.

Taking a photo of something you see on holiday that you think might be interesting to have as a record or to show friends on your return or even by Instagram or Twitter, I get but to take them constantly as if in a panic, means that you will not be able to bring to mind what you actually look at with your eyes in my opinion.  A bit like watching television.  You are 'there' but not in reality.

Lisbon is a beautiful city and it deserves to be captured in your memory and not just in your camera or phone. 

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