Lisbon again

Back in Lisbon for one day, more or less, and already had a lot of revelations. What is it about this place?

I landed at noon, which means I left Berlin at 8 am, which means…well. I was quite crabby, which was not helped by the fact that I am currently in the anger phase of this whole MS thing. Well, counting some weeks in November/December of last year, it is actually anger 2.0. The real anger. Anger – the return. Fortunately, I was picked up by my awesome friend Grant, who likes me, is patient, and is actually one of the few people around whom I am completely at ease with being myself.

So, first thing I learnt after sleeping in his bed almost the entire afternoon:

I need these weeks here to rest. I do not want to make the same mistakes as during my last trip, where I met with so many people, and always felt I came short of their expecatations, was missing something, etc. Whatever I did, I always felt I should be doing more, or something else. It was stressful. And hot. When I returned to Berlin I was exhausted. This time I return to a week of christmas celebration in my parents’ house, so I will need all the strength I can get. Entao, resting! Taking it slow.

The other thing I immediately realised was how Lisbon makes me calm. The first hour or so, walking through Alfama, I felt threatened, actually. I glowed the tourist glow, and people noticed. It was grey, shady, wet, scary. But it went away quickly, and when I went out for a tosta de queijo and a cha preto around 5 I felt at home. Even more so when I realised I could more or less follow the afternoon TV programme A tarde é sua. Nice.

The third thing is my own little project calls XX hostels in 3 weeks. At first it was five hostels, but let’s see. It depends a bit on the prize, my mood/health and willingness to drag my giant 18 kilo suitcase up and down the alleys and stairways that are Lisboa. I just checked into the first one (the project basically is checking out hostels that I do not know yet and staying there for some days). Already, I realise one flaw of the plan, namely: there are no other people. I will wait some days but if all the hostels are that empty, I prefer going back to Grant’s and my all time favourite hostels Rossio and Travellers House, where I know the people. For now, I am waiting. And writing.

Ah yes, the writing thing. I need to make a decision about my freelancing future, namely whether I should continue it, give it up or – my favourite option – combine it with a part time job that will offer me human contact, a structure and new challenges. I miss that. I miss to have a bit of stress… Another option would be a hostel job in Berlin. I had an interview some days ago and need to figure out whether to confirm or not. I need to find out how to become a Redakteurin. No clue, but right now I think that it is probably what I should be doing. Makes sense. Or translating novels. Whenever I read one, I find so many mistakes it makes me angry. If anyone has any insights on these things, please let me know.

So far for now, more soon.


About Rebekka Korthues

With 28 I did the first non-linear thing in my life. After school, university and work without any interruptions, I quit my advertising job and moved to Lisbon to find out what I want. The result: I write for a living, whether in Berlin or Lisbon. I am happy. Let's see how it goes.
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