Sunday, June 20, 2010

canals, bridges, aspirations

We're now in gorgeously sunny Portugal -- in the Beiras, a mountainous rural area. We sit by the pool listening to the birds symphonize (why yes, I did make that word up), the church bells tell the time melodically from the village down the road, the river burble just beyond the pool, and life is very simple, very good. Our hosts are warm, the other guests are few, but charming. I promise many pictures which will surely make you want to book a week here yourselves.

But I still have many photos of London which, if you don't mind, I'll share over the next while. Above and below, for example, are some of our walk along Regent's Canal which we're so pleased to have discovered. We had a fabulous walk along several kilometres of it on Sunday, from King's Cross Station along through Regent's Park, past the zoo, all the way to Baker Street. Along the way we stopped at Camden Lock where we were confronted with a stunning bazaar of marvelous ethnic food, all apparently home-cooked -- a plethora of choices worth many more sampling trips. I would put this walk near the top of my recommendations for London outings; it even reconciled us to the temperature -- a high of 13 degrees Celsius, in June??!!! -- although there's enough shade and probably a breeze of the water that it might be quite pleasant in summer heat as well.

Earlier in the week, we came across this graceful skybridge at the Royal Opera House.

I thought it was quite lovely, even before I discovered its name . . .

The dedication plaque tells us that it's the Bridge of Aspiration. We should all have one nearby . .
Right now I aspire to swim -- it's 11:15 and there's nothing more important for me to do before I start thinking about lunch and maybe a walk to the village, perhaps a nap on the chaise longue, possibly some reading in between more swims. . . .what a gorgeous contrast from the busy city.


  1. Wow, that was quite the flying visit to London! Look forward to more photos - and to hearing about the languid life in Portugal. We leave on Saturday for our week-long biking holiday in Austria - Passau (Germany) to Vienna. Luckily we have luggage transfer and spa hotels to alleviate the pain! Enjoy Portugal and Paris! Patricia

  2. Your trip sounds fabulous so far. The canal looks marvellous, and I'm adding to my "if-we-ever-get-to-London" notes. Enjoy that swim!

  3. Portugal sounds lovely and I can feel a bit of it though the birds who that your hosts are warm....sounds cozy!

  4. Ahhh, have a sardine for me and thanks for the posts!

  5. Patricia: We're not quite done with London yet -- a few more days there after Paris as we fly out from Heathrow.
    As for Portugal, I suspect you and your boys might like this place, altho' I suppose the younger gen. might find it slow . . . Enjoy your holiday.
    Pseu: I know you'd love it!
    HHR: They're your kind of people, good hostesses/hosts
    Duchesse: I'm still hoping to have some for me! They're not so plentiful here inland, but I'm hoping to feast when we go back to Porto

  6. A Bridge of Aspiration - how wonderful! And I'm pleased to see you're finally slowing down after the hectic lead-up to the trip ... Enjoy.


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