Oh 2018, you were a lot to handle. The Manchurian Cantaloupe spent the year calling the free press the enemy of the people, changing cabinet members more than I change my sheets, putting babies in cages and licking the posteriors of authoritarian leaders. I did my best to maintain a sense of humor (dicey at times) and I managed my fear of imminent global extinction through climate change through, well, global travel.
As usual, HOB and I stayed at a mix of budget hotels, guest houses and apartments. The apartment we rented in the Alfama neighborhood of Lisbon was tiny and had an impossibly tricky shower. It did, however, come with blue-jean themed espresso cups, so net win.
The weirdest thing we did this year was get in an airplane in Chicago and get out 13 hours later in Beijing. Flying direct to China; that’s conceptually crazy! And we start seeing signs showing dudes pulling rickshaws with their ankles—I mean, is this a normal occurrence in China because in Chicago we don’t even pull baby carriages with our ankles…
Also, as you’ve come to expect, we spent a lot of time looking at religious art. Inside a lovely Episcopal Church, for example, we were introduced to Our Lady of the Feathered Hair.
Mary and Jesus were also well represented in the churches of Portugal. Go ahead: hug a 16th century booby today.
Portugal religious art is not just about the baby Jesus, though. Case in point, these most fabulous monks ever.
I don’t always visit Chinese temples to look at religious statues, but when I do, eyebrows.
HOB and I ate ourselves silly in China, especially relishing Sichuan style food. We didn’t always know what we were ordering, though. Hmmm, could I please have a round mass of food to go?
Speaking of round masses of food….
Hold on to your donkey—-this is one spicy stir fry!
Wishing all my readers an engaging 2019. I hope your travels bring you new friends and close encounters with thrilling art.
And may all your dip bowls be bald.