I had grand plans of writing and publishing new travel stories while on the road in Portugal and Spain and it just didn’t happen. Sorry.
The closer you are to something, the more the detail ebbs and swirls and masks the essence of a place, and I found it harder than expected to distil days’ worth of experiences into single all about Lisbon or all about Porto snapshots while I was actually there. Besides, two-finger typing on an iPad while lying on a bed with aching feet and hundreds of the day’s photographs to go through was surprisingly unconducive to inspired writing sessions.
But here I am, back in my real life and ready to not only create some sort of record of my real life trip, but also hit the virtual road again with Leroy to explore all kinds of other destinations.
I want to be clear about one thing, though: my dislike of flying has escalated into full blown loathing. This has nothing to do with the airline staff, who were all professional and friendly, or the fact that there is no viable alternative method as yet of travelling to the other side of the world in less time (Elon Musk and your rocket, I’m looking at you). It’s all the do with the physical experience of sitting crammed with hundreds of others in a tin can for 24 hours, dehydrated and miserable. Virtual travel never looked so good as in those final few hours before landing.
I’m aware as much as the next person, though, that flying is a means to an end. And that I am incredibly lucky I’m in a position to be able to travel at all. The real life experience of visiting new places is such a different one to visiting somewhere virtually (and there are pros and cons for each).
Now I’ve made my apology for my long silence, I wanted to let you know — new travel stories are coming shortly!