Hello everybody, thanks for coming to my blog. It’s 9:51AM here in sunny Luz, and I’m sitting in the shadiest spot in the living room of my dad’s vila because my face is increasingly sunburnt.
Many of you know how difficult and stressful the last two months of my life were. That last week in the US, especially, was absurd and constantly full with almost no physical or mental rest. As I was boarding the first plane on Saturday (the 28th), I remarked to a couple of friends how physically spent I felt; how acutely I was noticing the effects of the prolonged high stress.
A lot of what kept me going was knowing that soon I would be escaping to this little sunny paradise. I wouldn’t have to pay rent (an inherently stressful activity), I wouldn’t have to worry about all of my things (for I own very few now), and the mess of my grandma’s estate would be (mostly) handled (or at least moving into a stage that wasn’t so frantically hands-on).
My goals for this leg of my travels are simple:
- Eat great food and drink great wine
- Focus on my work (something that had taken a detrimental backseat lately)
- Relax and be active in the sun
I’ve been here for one week and so far it’s been everything I’ve needed it to be. Let’s go goal by goal.
Eat great food
I really can’t overstate how much of a wonderful place this is to like food. The cuisine is brilliant, especially if you like fish and seafood, but also the ingredients you get from the supermarket are good and fresh and just, better than what you get in America. Even the little local supermarket feels like going to a nice butcher. The fish you see at the fish counter in Lagos looks like it was pulled out of the ocean that morning. This combination makes it so that while eating out is wonderful, so is cooking at home. Great ingredients elevate any food. Anyway, here are some pictures
Focus on work
This is a boring section for those of you following along at home, so I’ve sandwiched it in between the fun ones. Feel free to skip down to the next photo gallery.
As I mentioned earlier, my work has unfortunately taken a bit of a backseat in my life as I’ve dealt with things like death and moving and other general life upheavals. To be clear, it wasn’t just the logistical element of not having enough time, but also and perhaps moreso, a lack of mental space to actually focus on the generally complex and thought-intensive work that I do. Turns out grief and stress aren’t terribly conducive to productivity.
Aaaanyway, feeling so much more mental space here, I’ve been able to bill a lot of hours this last week, and I’m feeling way better about where I’m at. I still have a way to go before I feel like I’m not narratively behind on some projects, but I’m confident I’ll get there soon, which feels good.
Also, I’m getting the chance to really enjoy what I’m doing again, which is a lot of fun.
Okay back to fun stuff. To start, here’s the weather:
A function of my jet lag has been waking up before sunrise the first several days I’ve been here, so I’ve had plenty of mornings like this:
But despite jet lag, I’ve been doing lots of things. Ran four days this week (maybe five if I decide to brave the sun later today), hiked to Burgau and back yesterday (6ish miles round trip), and even spent some time here on Luz beach. Here are some photos, all from yesterday:
Anywho, that’s it for now. Thanks for reading, drop me a line if you feel like it, either in the comments or elsewhere.