23 December 2009

Animal Mummies

In 1888 an Egyptian farmer digging in the sand near the village of Istabl Antar uncovered a mass grave. The bodies weren't human. They were feline—ancient cats that had been mummified and buried in pits in staggering numbers. "Not one or two here and there," reported the English Illustrated Magazine, "but […] hundreds of thousands, […] ten to twenty cats deep." Some of the linen-wrapped cats still looked presentable, and a few even had gilded faces. Village children peddled the best specimens to tourists for change; the rest were sold in bulk as fertilizer. One ship hauled about 180,000, weighing some 38,000 pounds, to Liverpool to be spread on the fields of England.

An amazing article in November’s National Geographic Magazine. The rest of the article is here.

19 December 2009

Lisbon's Heart

In Luis de Camões Square, in downtown Lisbon, there is this adorable heart. The lights change with the touch of a hand.


Little boat

Little boat in Lisbon's river Tagus.

15 December 2009

100 Things Restaurant Staffers Should Never Do

Have you ever been to a restaurant alone where the waiter said something like “Are you waiting for someone?” and felt like replying “Thank you so much for that sweet reminder that I came alone to a restaurant today, but NO, I CAME ALONE”?

Have you ever been to a restaurant where the waiter took “an empty plate from one guest while others are still eating the same course”? So have I.

Ever felt like the service wasn’t quite up to what you were expecting?

Well, I discovered this sweet entry in a blog called: “100 Things Restaurant Staffers Should Never Do”, by Bruce Buschel, in a blog from the The New York Times. Need I say anything else? Part One here and Part Two here.

A must read.

11 December 2009

Chilly Sara

It’s been so cold lately I can actually feel my nose and ears!

Son of a Bitch!

Check ou the name of this blog (not the address, the NAME!)

It seriously pissed me off!

9 December 2009

Critic kills Lust

In last week’s culinary review of Time Out Magazine, this precious gem appeared. I am sorry, but it is only in Portuguese but, if you are thinking about learning a new language, you could always choose Portuguese as it will be worth .

It starts off with a warning: “As melhores coisas deste restaurante semi-novo vimo-las logo no primeiro minuto: um bom poiso com vista para a rua da Escola Politécnica, habitado por empregados simpáticos. Se lhe parece uma boa descrição não leia mais, porque a partir daqui... foi sempre a descer.” [The best of this semi-new restaurant were seen in the first minute: a good location overviewing Rua da Escola Politécnica, served with friendly employees. If this sounds like a good description, read no more, because it all went downhill from here.” ]
And after he it goes deeper than Hell. Seriously.
This literary genious – only a genious could waste/spend his time destroying a restaurant with an intelligent, humours and immaginative review - wrote the following: “a massa que envolvia [as bochechas de porco] era qualquer coisa parecida com aquelas que se compram numa loja dos chineses. E não estou a dizer loja de comida chinesa.” ["the dough envolving them [the pork cheeks] looked like something you would buy at a Chinese store. And I am not talking about a Chinese food store."]
Tiago Rio, I LOVE YOU!

6 December 2009

No rubber band chopticks

Last week, I went to a japanese restaurant – Origami sushihouse– with some people from work.

I’ve only have sushi once before and didn’t like, but this time I LOVED IT. Truly good. Great atmosphere, service, and food, except form the music, which was everything but Japanese. I think it “matched” the TV, broadcasting some music channel.

But the best thing, really, was that I ate with the Japanese chopsticks, as you can see from the photo. I didn’t need to use the ones with the rubber band on the end, no sir, nor the typical knife and fork, like the waitress kindly told us she could bring. My foot, she would! I ate like a Japanese!

My plate and chopsticks!

3 December 2009

Chocolate for the soul

I found a new blog about books. It's called Chocolate para a alma [chocolate for the soul], and they have a fabulous tagline: "reading doesn't fatten". It's a very literal translation, I know, but I don't feel inspired to bo better.
I'll be following them closely, for sure

30 November 2009

What you inherit from your mother

I inherited my genes from two people: my parents. Mother and father. The eyes, the hair colour, the hair, skin lightness, ... like most people. However, George Clooney's charater, Ryan Bingham, in 'Up in the air' movie got something else. He got the quote of the year.
"I'm like my mother, I stereotype. It's faster."
Watch the clip here, near the 1 minute mark.

26 November 2009

I loved NY last weekend

Last weekend I went to the movies and saw the belated “New York I Love You”. I’ve been waiting to see this movie for quite some time now, and last weekend, I finally saw it. The verdict: worth seeing.

New York I love you” is a movie I’ve mentioned before in this blog, many months ago. It all began with a French movie called “Paris Je T’aime” and this one is now an American version. Well, sort of.

The concept is the same: mini love stories which take place in the different parts of the city, written, directed and started by different actors. The conception is different. While in Paris, we had separate love stories, each told one after the other, in NY, you see parts of each love story spread throughout the movie. You don’t have 8-minute stories, but maybe 2 or 3 minutes of one story, followed by the same amount of time of another love segment.

At first, I felt somewhat disappointed that the NY didn’t follow the Paris scheme, but after a few minutes, I realized that the movie had a certain rhythm that the Paris didn’t. Don’t get me wrong, I love Paris and NY is equally charming, but only after seeing NY did I realise that, by breaking the stories into segments, the story ended up being more coherent (It may seen strange, but it isn’t, trust me) because the characters all sort of meet each other. Like the Six degrees of separation theory (look it up). For example, the not-spontaneous guy bumps into the one night stand guy, the girl from the one night stand meets the pharmacist, the pharmacist knows the boys from the prom segment, the video camera girl knows the sex flirt guy, the man who can’t communicate with his wife sees the sex flirt guy, the sex worker (yes, there is one) meets the camera girl... they are all connected. The stories and the people. Which reminds me...

The NY has many, many stories, like the music composer, the bride to be, the once-famous singer, the divorced parents juggling time with heir daughter, the painter and the muse, the thief, the pretty girl and the professor, the old couple on the day of their wedding anniversary... hum... the one with a girl complaining her boyfriend isn’t spontaneous, the one night stand boy and girl version of a second ‘date’, the couple that can’t communicate, the one with guy meets girl on the street and flirts with her using extremely explicit sex language and so on and so forth. And the one with the girl with the camera. And the boy and girl at prom night. Many great love stories.

But, I have to be honest, at times, i got the feeling that the movie was more about loneliness and failure to connect that about love itself. In many stories, they emphasize how lonely people are. And silent, too. They don’t communicate with other people and many times, we only get to know what they are thinking because we can hear what they think! Yes, some of the characters narrate their thoughts or ideas.

For example, when I say that some of the characters are lonely, I am thinking about the musician. For most of his story, he is alone, sleeping, trying to write, going for coffee, and the only apparent relationship he has is with an assistance (we assume) over the phone, who sends him things and tries to help him finish his work on time. Of the one night stand couple. Most of their story is about them going to meet each other for a second time, on the metro, taxi, walking, while remembering what their last ‘encounter’ was like.

They are alone with their thoughts and we are invited to come into their lives for 7 to 8 minutes. We learn to fall in love with their stories, characters, and situations and their will probably be an “Aaahhhh” at the end of the screening. I’ll definitely buy the DVD once it gets out.

25 November 2009

Invisible quotes

“Não, estou a falar dos corpos dos outros homens. Não sinto o menor desejo de tocar neles, não sinto o menor desejo de ver os outros homens nus. Para dizer a verdade, muitas vezes pergunto-me por que raio é que as mulheres se sentirão atraídas pelos homens. Se eu fosse mulher, o mais certo era ser lésbica.”

“Pergunta-se se as palavras não serão um elemento essencial do sexo, se falar não será afinal uma forma mais subtil de tocar, se as imagens que rodopiam nas nossas cabeças não serão tão importantes como os corpos que abraçamos.”
Invisível, Paul Auster, tradução de José Vieira de Lima

23 November 2009

Santa Claus is coming to town

Christmas is coming and, as usual, people go crazy thinking of what to buy other people. After 8-hours of daily work, some people still manage to drag themselves to mall and whatnots to buy Christmas gifts.

However, it is a good idea to know in advance what is it that you are going to buy, otherwise when you drag yourself aimlessly through the stores you’ll fell like screaming at the woman in front of you carrying 5 different bags that has just (accidentally) hit you with one of them as she rushs through the book store.

So, this year, here’s a tip: PLAN AHEAD.

The wind doesn’t seem to inviting? The idea of having your feet and the bottom of your trousers wet doesn’t charm you? No? So here’s tip # 2: STAY HOME. Go on-line and browse through some of the Christmas suggestions that The New York Times, New York Magazine or FNAC have for you. Use the ideas they have and adapt them so you liking.

And to kick off the Christmas season in a good spirit, here are some of my suggestions for possible Christmas gifts you can give (me or other people): books, umbrellas, socks, trips, massages, a day at the spa, iPods, Mad Men Season 1 DVD, magazine subscription, Photoshop, new cell phone, gift cards, car, house, pets, gloves, funny handkerchiefs, cooking utensils, IKEA vouchers, theatre tickets, cookbooks, bracelets, Jimmy Choo’s, sunny weather, jumping ropes, photography books, key chains, mugs, chocolates, bookends, hair pins, place mats, shower gels, false eyelashes, board games, flowers, hair dryers, lipsticks, comfy slippers, Nespresso coffe machines,... get the idea?

13 November 2009


Today is Friday 13th. Nothing bad happened to me. So far.
Except that tonight there will be no Mad Men on tv, but a 24-hour marathon of "24". Darn!

9 November 2009

Surprise at Work

Back to work, already.

But today I had a surprise: I arrived to find out that I had been transferred to the translations section of the room! I think I will be diving into translations full time, now!

Here’s hoping...!

Have a good week!

8 November 2009

A Fact a Day Keeps Boredom Away

A friend of mine just e-mailed me this amazing website. It's called "Learn Something Everyday" and the name is pretty much self-explanatory.

The website presents one fact per day and they are really funny and informative. They have small windows with bright, eye-catching colours with funny pictures and the fact of the day. Today's fact is:

Worth visiting.

29 October 2009

House Hunting

I took two weeks off to relax and go house hunting. If anyone hears of good bargains in Lisbon, shoot me an e-mail.

23 October 2009

Asthmatics in Lamborghinis

Last night, I was watching tv when I stumbled across TOP GEAR. Man, I haven’t seen that program in a while!

10 minutes in, they start talking about the new Lamborghini and the tall man, the one with giant legs and curly hair used one of the best metaphors I have ever heard! He said that the air conditioning of the [previously released] Lamborghinis was like “an asthmatic breathing at you through a straw”. GENIOUS!

I can’t actually remember the correct phrase – to you, at you ? - but the “asthmatic breaking through a straw” was brilliant, right?

Hungry Hippos

An amazing video with photographs of the feeding time in the Lisbon Zoo. A must see, here.

Ok, the hippos are not in the video, but the name is funny.

14 October 2009

Genius in a Bottle

Genious in a bottle!
In Portuguese here.
In English here.

13 October 2009

Personal Questionnaire on VF

Vanity Fair Magazine (VF) has this amazing Proust Questionnaire they publish on-line once a month. It’s a very nice questionnaire that VF asks one public figure every month – movie stars, actors, politicians, painters, writers, scientists… you name it. Go here for more information on the Questionnaire.

Now, they made it even cooler: you can answer the Questionnaire yourself! If done already and it was really funny to be able to answer the same questions that Carolina Herrera, Dustin Hoffman or Tony Curtis.

You can easily access it here. Enjoy!

11 October 2009


It's been a while since I posted any picts. So here are a few more (from July), colourfull and funny graffities.

I haven't been out taking pictures recently. It'sprobably because of the heat, the demoralising heat! But the weather is starting the chil and I think I will be hitting the streets soon!

2 October 2009

Spanish rain


It looks like this weekend the rain will not remain mainly in the plain or in Spain!

30 September 2009

Shreded Mariah

Better than a reading a good review is reading a review that completely shreds to pieces a music album, in this case, Mariah Carey’s “Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel”, but written in such a way that it transpires intelligence, eloquence and an almost perfect use of the English language.

28 September 2009

Quero o Calippo Cola!!!

Também sentem falta do Calippo Cola? Era óptimo sentir o pegajoso da cola na boca, lábios e bochechas depois tentar beber/trincar um Calippo Cola.

A OLÁ está a fazer uma petição on-line e quem estiver interessado em trazer o Calippo Cola de volta apenas tem de assinar a petição aqui.
Notícia aqui, da TIME OUT LISBOA.

18 September 2009

Facial Photos

"Photographer Howard Schatz had an idea: place actors in a series of roles and dramatic situations to reveal the essence of their characters. Such was the premise behind his book, In Character: Actors Acting, which captures some of Hollywood’s most emotive stars in the act of, well, making faces. Luckily for us, he continued the tradition for the pages of Vanity Fair. Here are some of the best. "

Vanity Fair, October, here

16 September 2009

The New October

For many years, September was, to me, synonym with going back to school and studying and October was synonym with weather. I’ll explain.

During September you could still wear some of the clothes you used during the summer and you didn’t need coats or sweater, for that matter. The idea alone would make you shriek.

But this year, especially because I didn’t have a vacation or and no longer studying, September is the new October.

Earlier this week the weather became cooler. The days are warm(ish), and the evenings are a little bit chilly, which means you have to take a sweater or a coat with you when you go out. I somehow feel we are already in October.

Also, it is the time when you wake up in the middle of the night a little bit cold and pull out a blanket from your closet and cover yourself up in bed. And I love it! I love feeling the comforting weight of the blanket, the crispness of the sheets… I feel comfortable and comforted.

I know it may sound strange, but hey… though luck!

4 September 2009

New New Team Member

We're having a new team member here at work!

It's a girl (another!), Maria José, who will be starting today, doing project management.


3 September 2009

New Team Member

We're having a new team member here at work!

It's a guy (yes!), Jordan, who will be starting next Monday during the afternoons. He's one of our freelance translator who came for a visit and decided to stay for a month to perfect his Portuguese.

He'll be doing in-house translations.


27 August 2009

Trust me on this one

I have a new label (on the blog) called "Trust me on this one".
I'll use it for suggestions about things I really like and vividly recommend to you.

(Great) Free eBook!

This one promises: "100 New Yorkers of the 1970s", by Max Millard - free profiles of Isaac Asimov, George Plimpton, Tom Wolfe, among others.

A definite must-read!

I’ve started reading some of the profiles and they are truly amazing.

The book includes such profiles as

ISAAC ASIMOV - Author of 188 books

GEORGE BALANCHINE - Artistic director of the New York City Ballet

JULES FEIFFER - Screenwriter for “Popeye the Sailor”

GEORGE LANG - Owner of the Cafe des Artistes

Amazing people. Amazing stories. Amazing writing. Trust me, you won't be disappointed.

Go here for more informations, and here or here for the book itself.

p.s. - I hope it is as good as "Journalistas - 100 Years of the Best Writing and Reporting by Women Journalists" (this one not for free, though)

18 August 2009

Extra weight

After finishing a 700 page book (Stieg Larsson's 'Milennium' trilogy), I turned to a 150-Agatha Christie murder mystery (Elephants Can Remember).

I miss the extra weight.

12 August 2009

Licking the monitor

Oh My God!!! I know I use this expression a lot, but in this case, it is so true.

I could also say “eat your heart out” but, given the context, it wouldn’t be very appropriate - or it would, I don't know. Just go here (also in English here) and try not to lick the monitor.

The recipes look fabulous and the photos are heavenly delighful! One of the most delicious food/cooking blogs I've discovered recently! Seriously good!

Here's a little something to open your appetite.

Bon appetit!

P.S. - The photos are very artistic, right?

11 August 2009

It's too hot to write

It's too hot (36º C) to write.

6 August 2009

Sad Sara

Last week I did a translation about a PRODUCT that a PERSON created.
Today, the CLIENT sent us another document to be translated.
When I opened it, I realized that the PERSON who created the PRODUCT had died and I had to translate THE PERSON’S obituary.
Sad Sara
(Confidentiality agreements unable me from being more specific)

3 August 2009

Secret to a Lasting Marriage

Around the time of my parents' 50th wedding anniversary, I turned to my father at the dinner table one night and said, "It's amazing, Dad — 50 years, and you never once had an affair. How do you account for that?"

He replied simply, "I can't drive."

Watching the governor of South Carolina cry like a little girl because his sexy e-mails got forwarded to his local newspaper, the State, made me wonder whether the real secret to a lasting marriage lies in limiting your means of escape.

“Is There Hope for the American Marriage?”, by Caitlin Flanagan, Thursday, Jul. 02, 2009, TIME Magazine, here.

28 July 2009

Leibovitz Love

One of the first photographers whose work I started admiring was Annie Leibovitz’s. Then Richard Avedon, Robert Doisneau, Henri Cartier-Bresson, and many others.

When I discovered that there was going to come out a book with Annie Liebovitz work – A Photographer's Life 1990-2005 – I was super excited about it. The book was receiving great reviews, everyone loved it, everyone was eagerly waiting for the book… and then I find out the price. 76 €. OH MY GOD!! My heart almost stopped. I mean, the book is huge and amazingly beautiful, but, seriously … 76 €? No thanks.

(A Photographer's Life 1990-2005)

So, yesterday, I went to FNAC, one of the favourite bookstores (they aren’t exactly a bookstore; it’s more a commercial establishment that sells books, CD, DVD, computers and related stuff) and discovered a book called “Annie Liebovitz At Work”. It was a true finding! The books comes with hundreds of Leibovitz’s photos, with texts written by her explaining the photo, the context, something funny about it. It is a very complete book and it only cost me 25 € (minus a discount that I had, I ended up paying 18 € for that masterpiece)

(Annie Leibovitz's At Work) (the masterpiece)

So, if you love her work and couldn’t afford “A Photographer’s Life 1990-2005”, my advice is: LEAVE YOUR HOUSE RIGHT NOW AND GO AND BUY “AT WORK”.


22 July 2009

Beauty Quotes

Quando já não se faz parte do universo sexual - quando se é suposto ser demasiado velho, ou gordo, ou se deixou simplesmente de ser alvo desse tipo de pensamentos - aparentemente, surge toda uma nova onda de reacções masculinas. Uma delas é o humor.

É do género, uma família já não funciona quando todos os que fazem parte dela estão mais infelizes do que estariam se estivesse sozinhos.

O tempo não é o que é, mas sim o que se sente [...].

Eu não pergunto a mim própria para que é que vivi [...]. Isso é uma pergunta de homem. Pergunto para quem é que vivi.

Não foi a primeira vez que numa reunião de Faculdade, Howard desejou estar tão sensorialmente deficiente como a própria [Helen] Keller.

Uma Questão de Beleza, Zadie Smith

20 July 2009

Gaffiti Urban Art Gallery

Lisbon's Municipal Council did something really nice.

They arranged for this really cool space for graffiti artistics to do their thing. The artsy graffities, not the tags and other scribbles.

They say it is a "Garrifit and Street Art Galley supported by the Câmara Municipal de Lisboa and dedicated of creative freedom as expression of urban art."
These are two of them. Great colours.

More information here.

19 July 2009


This little 'plant' is associated with the festivities of the City's Saint - St. António - and during the month of June and July, they sell them like crazy.

It comes in a little pot, with a small paper flower and a rime. They're a tradicional item to purchase, and the best thing about them is that, in order for you to smell them, you don't stick your nose into it. No, you pat it once or twice and them you smell your hand.

Dancing with myself

About a month ago, I went to the downtown area of Lisbon, Baixa / Chiado, for a walk and started hearing this great music someone was playing. It was this really jazzy, alive music, and people were just standing there, listening and taking pictures. I though it was strange that people were taking pictures of a couple dancing, and only after I looked closer did I noticed that the couple wasn't human.

I mean, the woman was, but she was dancing with a puppet. She had one hand inside his hat, her other hand was on his back and their shoes where attached. So cute!

(look at the man/puppet's legs, near the shoes)

16 July 2009

VF's Bodies Swayed to Music

Vanity Fair magazine is amazing.

They publish daily new contents online, which everyone can consult for free. They include photos, interviews, magazine articles, and many more things.

Today, I was amazed by their photo gallery of dancers. Truly beautiful/ funny/ moving/ artistic picutres here. No login/ payment/ subscription necessary.

Ⓒ American Ballet Theatre stars Ethan Stiefel, Jose Manuel Carreño, Vladimir Malakhov, and Angel Corella, photographed by Annie Leibovitz in New York City. From the December 2002 issue.

I too love NY

I first gave this news a while back, in April (go here for more details or info)

For all of you Paris, Je t’aime fans, here’s good news: the NY version of the movie, New York, I Love You, will be premiering in Portugal in 5 November 2009.


Hope it is as good and the French one.

15 July 2009

Furnishing books

Books not only furnish a room, to paraphrase the title of an Anthony Powell novel, but also accessorize our outfits. They help brand our identities.

"What’s a Culture Snob to Do?", by James Wolcott, Vanity Fair Magazine on-line, August 2009.
Complete text here. Worth reading.

10 July 2009

How books got their titles

Do you wanna know how books get their titles? Click here.

Really funny and interesting.

Book wizard

I like to read. A lot. I always liked to read. I remember being very young and my father reading to me and my sister the Enyd Blyton books – The Five, The Twins, etc. Them I started reading on my own. I read again the entire The Five collection and many other Portuguese collections. To be honest, I think I devoured books.

I later managed to choose the books I wanted to read my myself and have been ever since.

However, there are times when I don’t know what to read next (ring a bell, father?). I read a really good book and them I think “What shall I read next? I really liked this book and I want to next book I read to be as good as this one.”

I am glad to inform you that help is coming. (To be honest, it’s already here, but the sentence “help is coming” is way better than “help is here”.)

Just go here and write the name of the book you’ve just read, and the author and then you’ll get suggestions from 2 bookstores – Amazon and LibraryThing – whether from the same author or with a similar thematic or genre. Very helpful and fun. I think it only works for English titles, but write the English title of the book you’re reading and BAM! You’ll get a suggestion.

7 July 2009

Work, translations, Zadie Smith

I am reading Zadie Smith’s On Beauty and I am loving it - the Portuguese translation.

Because I’ve been working during the week and weekends as well, I haven’t had time to go around and snap photos of strangers. I’ll try and get around to it this weekend.

Now I have to get back to work.

3 July 2009

No title good enough

Life is too important to be taken seriously.

Oscar Wilde

1 July 2009

Moments (Salamanca Exhibition # 22, 23)

No words necessary.

Reading in the sun.

No human was harmed during the performance of this stunt.

26 June 2009

Reading Habits

A must read right here. I’m sorry but it is in Portuguese.

Even though I 'm a translator this is a very VERY translation of the abovementioned article:

I like to read what Isabel Coutinho writes because she is an enthusiast of the new literary technologies without loosing her passion for the old ones. A wise attitude. The physical mediums don’t get lost nor replaced: they multiply. When the technology is updated, the traditional ways of bookmaking are even more valued. The only danger is that we’ll end up with nothing to read – and that danger doesn’t exist.

In yesterday’s juicy newspaper article in P2 newspaper supplement, Coutinho writes that 12 % of American book buyers read an eBook over the last month and 6 % read one eBook on a cell phone. Coutinho qualifies this percentage as “only”, when she should have used “already”.

I already have an eBook reader, BeBook, for almost one year now. After the second day, I couldn’t go without it. It’s very light but can store up to 4 GB in books, magazines and texts – enough for more than 40 thousands hours of furious reading capacity. All we have to do is charge its battery every five days. It never overheats nor blinks.

It’s easy to read under the brightest of sunlight due to its black screen on gray background, without tiring the eyes. All of this cannot be achieved with laptops and cell phones. BeBook can only be used for this, reading.

It’s similar to reading photocopies in black and white in half an A4 sheet. It blurs out the pictures, but we can replace and increase the font size. It doesn’t have beauty, cuteness nor ink smell. But reads very well. When we get absorbed by what we’re reading, we forget what we are holding. Isn’t that is the idea of reading?

Sara, the yogurt maker, part 2


The yogurts came out delicious. A bit warm, but still, for a first trial in over 10 years, not bad.

Photos to follow.

25 June 2009

The Market (Salamanca Exhibiton # 20, 21)

When Hugo invited me to do the exhibiton, I almost freaked out because I didn't have many photos with the themes of 'multiculturalism', 'imigration' and something else.

So, I decided to go to a local market near my mother's house. I later came to realise that that was a huge mistake. People didn't want pictures taken, they looked away, and one woman yelled at me. She yelled her lungs out at me! So, all in all, not a very rewarding experience.

I did manage to snap 2 (out of 43) (yes, 43) photos which I tought reflected the market people.

The market people are usually older people (older than me, not old), in their 40-60 years of age, who never move very far away from their area. They protect their produce and are nice to the approching people they can detect will buy something. The other are shooched away with sideway glances. I also noticed, while there, that they were always rubbing their hands and keeping them in their apron pockets. Don't know why.

They were very simple clothes, in plain fabrics, usually with a plaid pattern on their shirt or scarfs, many with (once) white plastic aprons.

I managed to snap a photo of a (not very mentally sane) woman, who was walking around the different market sections, advising people on what to buy. When they picked something up that she didn't think was good enough, she would insult them and then pick the right produce.

This was taken in the fruit section. The woman on the right is the not vey mentally sane produce advising woman. I think the pinapples give it a funny flare.

Butchers. Enough said. I love the eyebrows on the man on the left, very full. His apron is a little spotted with blood, but that's ok.

Sara, the yogurt maker

I remember being about 9 or 11 years old and making homemade yogurts. It took forever to make them, but the result was amazing.
The entire process was almost an adventure: we had to go and buy powder milk, milk and yougurt, them mix everything and cook in a light simmer, the pour into the glass yogurt cups and turn the yogurt maker on. Them the yogurt maker worked during the night, for about 8 hours and in the morning we had homemade yogurts.
The only problem is that the yogurts were still warm and we had to wait until the next day to eat them cool. I mean, we could eat them once they were made, but they tasted better when cool.
Tonight, my father and I have decided to try and make some more yogurts, after a 15-year break. Future postings on the result, due tomorrow at 6.30 a.m. (the yogurts, not my feedback).
(I am sorry, but I don't have any pictures of my yogurt maker. Maybe in the furture...)
update: for some reason, I can't seem to be able to separate the paragraphs, which is annoying.

24 June 2009

Loneliness (Salamanca Exhibition 17, 18, 19)

See the person sitting with their legs crossed smoking a cigarette? The one with a hoody? Boy or girl? Boy or girl? Can you guess?

This one is in downtown Lisbon, to the left of where I was standing when I took this one. One the wall there are some writting with the translations into several languages of the sentence "Lisboa, Cidade da Tolerância" - Lisbon, City of Tolerance. The English one is right under the Portuguese one, in the middle, also close to the Spanish one. As it so happened, someone wasn't very tolerant - the first letters of the Portuguese word 'Tolerance' as graffited over.

I took this picture at the entrance of a boat terminal in Lisbon, where people take the boat to cross the river. It was pretty much 'snap and run', because the security guard had already told me twice that I could not take any pitures. This is (luky) photo number 13.

21 June 2009

Lord of the Rings

What is the best this about the Lord of the Rings trilogy?

a ) all the easily spotted mistakes

b ) the detail of the production

c ) the Orcs

d ) Legolas and Aragorn

e ) this.

A foggy day in Lisbon town (aka Salamanca Exhibiton photos 14, 15, 16)

These are all pictures of the same place: Praça do Comércio (Commerce Square, literally translated) in Lisbon.

Crazy homeless man who cursed at me and threatened me to leave.

I find this photo to be very artistic. Almost magic. The person walking in the background, the fog/humidity, the lamp posts...

This picture is very grainy, due to humidity. I took this one around January 2008 when I was going home. I was standing on a bench and someone took a picture of me taking the picture. If you see a cray girl on a bench during a day/night with a lot of humidity, the chnaces are that it is me.

18 June 2009

Salmanca Exhibition # 11, 12, 13

I am now realising that my photos - or at least most of them - have two things in common:
- I am never there on purporse taking the pictures. I usually am on my way somewhere else and just so happen to take a picture of something I thought was interesting (for these, I was on my way to the supermarket (1st photo), on my way home (2nd) and on my ay to a local market (3rd)).
- Only when I get home do I notice that I took an interesting photos. This applies to most of my good photos, but not only.
These three pictures, to me, are all about the contrast, whether in shadows or black and white bouldness.

I took this one in Rossio, a large square in downtown Lisbon. This place where I was is a hangout spot for people of different races - Africans, Asians, etc.. I tried to take pictures of people of different social or cultural background but they all came you really bad. I was about to leave to go to the supermarket when I noticed that the man I first thought was asleep was now comlaining about something. He was asleep on the pedestal, touching the star, and when he turned around, he fell and that is what he was complaining about. I heard him cursig, turned around very fast, took the picture and left. As I was waiting for the lights to change near the crossroad, I was browsing throught he pictures and saw that the framing was decent, the light was ok and it was an interesting picture with a religious something to it: on the background you have a religious building (Catholic) and a Jewish star in the front.

I went for a stroll around the city and ended up in Largo do Carmo (Carmo Square), in Baixa. I was trying t take pictures at this group of performers (singer, guitar player and juggler) but the photos were coming out terribly ugly. I had already noticed this couple when I first got there but didn't try to take their picture because they were always loking in my direction. So, there I am trying to take a decent picture when I hear this really fun laughter, the kind f laughter you know that the person laughing is really enjoying him/herself. I turn around and take the picture. The funny thing is that it wasn't until I got home that I noticed that I had caught the guy laughing.

I love this one, eve though I dn't really know why. This is the picture of the shadow of a man who sells 2nd hand books under the arcades of Praça do Comércio in Lisbon. He has a cruffy beard and very understanding eyes. He saw that I was taking his picture and didn't mind at all. He went on back and forth with his stroll. When I finnished (10 pictures for 1 good one), I thanked him and he he smiled at me and nodded his head once.

17 June 2009

Salamanca Exhibition photos # 8, 9, 10

To me, all of these picture have a feeling of loneliness in then. Yet, I don't hink they are sad photos.
Train station.

Love it!

Taken in one of my favourite hangout spots: the S. Pedro de Alcântara Belvedere, in Lisbon. I go there and read and enjoy the view... very relaxing.

12 June 2009

Girl Power

Today at work there are only women. The boss is at home, sick.

10 June 2009

More amazing graffities

The colours, the composition, who could say they are ugly?

(my current screensaver)

Portuguese poet Fernando Pessoa

9 June 2009

Salamanca Exhibition # 7

Homeless man, who saw that I was going to take the picture and started to leave. 1 second later, it would have been too late.

Today I am happy because

Now that I am a working girl (I have to take the metro, then a bus, then walk to go to work), I use the time it takes me to get there to read. I always liked to read, ever since I was a child, and since it takes me about 1 hour to go to work, I use that time to do something prolific. In my case, reading.

But this is my problem: today, I only had one book with me (!), the same book I’ve been reading since Monday, which means I was nearing the end of the book and forgot to bring another one. To many people, this may seem meaningless or idiotic, but to me it is a problem, because it means that I’ll spend about 1 ½ hour doing nothing but look away when people look at me on the bus and metro. Tis 1 1/2 hour is the rest of the time to go to work and the time of the way back.

So, I finished the book and then realised that I had my mp3 player with me, pressed play (Nada Surf, Billy Idol, Death Cab for Cuttie, …) and, when I got on the bus, I found an empty seat! Oh My God, I was so happy, because that meant I didn’t have to hold on for dear life while the bus driver transformed the bus in a race car.

I went to my seat, listed to the music and looked out the window and noticed how beautiful the view was. The sun was reflecting on the river water, really shiny, but the sky was still somewhat cloudy because it’s been raining for the past 3 days.

I can’t describe it any better, but it was so beautiful! The sun shinning through the clouds (gray and white), the blue sky, the sun reflecting on the water… it was the perfect beginning for a work day. That and the seat on the bus and knowing that tomorrow and the day after are public holidays, a.k.a. – no work.
Night update: the day didn't go so well. Today we had lots of work and I had to stay there for 1 extra hour.

7 June 2009

Graffities - Bairro Alto

Bairro Alto is all about the bars, drinks and the graffities. Some graffities can be artistic, other not so much. This one is artistic, I think, as is this one.

Today I was looking for a new desktop screensaver and I opened a folder on my pc with several graffities I never got around to posting.

So here they are.

This is a new trend: a graffiti stencil (I made that up): someone cuts an image on a stencil, places it on a wall and spray paints it. And there you go, a graffiti. I like the fact that the painter stand out much more because of all the tags (graffiti lingo for signatures made with graffiti spray paint).

I think this is actually two different graffities: a boy praying and Tweety bird was later added. It lks silly and funny at the same time.

I love this one! If you look closely, you can see that the girl is handcuffed to the teddy bear. That says so much about childhood.

6 June 2009

Salamanca Exhibition # 6

The woman in the post bellow reminded me of this man, who also seems tiny.

Salamanca woman (charra)

I told you I had an artistic photo taken in Salamanca. This is it.

I took this one in the Cathedral and, once again, I had to follow my subject around. I spotted her when I went in and immediatly noticed that she was walking very slowly and with difficulty. The day before I had noticed that there was set of candle shedding very little light over a corner of the cathedral and thought "Hum... I wonder what she would look like near the candles."

Originaly, I wanted the picture to be in colours, but after a miute or two after walking in, I got distracted and lost her. So I had to track her down and my the time she was near the candles it was too late to set the camera back to colours (I had set the camera for black and white). So this is her.

This is also one of my all-time favourites because the woman sees tiny.

5 June 2009

Salamanca Ehibition # 5

Bairro Alto - Lisbon

A man kneeling down and cooking some sardines on a grill and a man who when for a walk with his dog.

Plaza Mayor

I probably took about 10 pictures at Plaza Mayor, in Salamanca. This is the only decent one.

Plaza Mayor is (I think) the central square in the city, as it was the case back in the day. It's a huge squre, with a large centre, where go and have expensive coffees, sit around doing nothing, fall asleep on the ground because it's made of stone, which is fresh during the summer (Yes, Hugo.) (inside joke). But when I was there, there was a book fair going on, so the pictures of the square were very limited.

Around the square is where it is the Municipal Council, and overly-priced degraded houses, empty houses and one or two hotels.

Mirror mirror on the wall

If crime showed on a man's face, there wouldn't be any mirrors.

Albert in We're No Angels, 1955 (movie)

4 June 2009

Salamanca Exhibition # 4

One of my first picksfor the exhibition. It's in the Castle, in Lisbon. Only after a week or so did I realize who Biblical it looked, with the tree and the light.
I remember being a kid and going up to the Castle and seeing this tree there, exactly it is now. In over 10 years that it hasn't changed. I love who the leaves are very crips.
There's something about it.

1 June 2009

1st days of work

So far so good.

I am now getting the grip of things, and everything seems to be running more smoothly, which is nice. The days don’t seem so endless and I can see I do things faster.

More pictures to come in the future.

29 May 2009


I am now getting a hang of the translation software I use at work.

I have just now been assigned my first solo work. Keep your fingers crossed.

28 May 2009

Salamanca Exhibition # 2

30 Março 2009 - Napping
I took this picture in Lisbon, near the S. Carlos National Theatre. This old man was probably taking a nap as it was after lunch and I took the opportunity to snap a picture. There was a foreign couple sitting on a bench next to him who saw me taking the picture and were always pointing at me and whispering. I didn't hear what they were saying, but I didn't need.
On the background you see a statue of a man with a book instead of a head. That is Fernando Pessoa, famous Portuguese poet, although in real life he did have a head. It was built to comemorate the100 years of his birth (I think) and placed in this square because he lived for a very long time on the building behind it (windows with varandas).