A LOVE LETTER...TO PORTUGAL

How rich a lover I am of travel it is well-versed on these blogs pages.  I have loved being a child of Europe, coming from mixed parentage, and spending my young years in Greece, learning French with my Belgian mother, schooling in England, living in France, loving Spain, snowboarding Austria, arms out-stretched in Italy.  One country though, seems to have had me in it's loving and warm grasp since I was first taken there, not even yet a citizen of this planet, in my mother's pregnant belly.

Travel company and all-round purveyors of brilliant travel advice, tips, booking ease and awesomeness KAYAK are sharing a campaign that I love, and is all about their love of Europe, and sharing a personal love story with it or an individual country.

Portugal, where I have lived, loved, worked, and have spent and continue to spend so much of my time, has always been a constant in my life.  Somehow, every time I am here, I fall more and more in love with this wildly beautiful country.  I have penned and created my own Love Letter to Portugal as part of this campaign... This is truly a special one for me, something I loved to write, I loved to create.  It is from the heart, as Portugal is a part of me, body, soul, mind and more.  

You can create your own Love Letter using #loveeurope and #KAYAKloveeurope to a country in Europe that you love.  Get inspired and check out mine below!  This is from the heart!

Find out more and visit KAYAK at www.Kayak.co.uk

A love letter to Portugal

Oh Portugal.  Since I took my own first steps on this planet, upon your very own rich and awesome soil, you had me at the get go.

I’ve lived and loved you every year I have spent on this earth, and every time we’re together, I fall in love with you a little more.

Where can I start, is it the rich, golden glow about your varied, ancient lands, which have traces of so many wild and different cultures imprinted across it, doused in your foods, in the intoxicating, bewitching smiles of your peoples, in the shape of your lands, the ruins, the curves of your cobbles, the ancient rock, and whispers of the spirits and energies who were here in an ancient time.

Is it the crispness of your salty air, the endless hours of play and love I have had in your roaring and wild waters, the first touch of sand on my babe toes, the first swim, the first time I lay my belly on a board, and felt the defiant surge of your power, the first time I stepped both feet on a surfboard, the beginning of an enduring and wild love affair that to you, Portugal, I am eternally grateful.

It could be the smiles from your local elder statesmen, pitched up at their spots every morning, the knowing smiles of the elderly fisherman as I leave when the sun is peeping over the horizons for an early run into the hills, pit- stopping for one of your delectable coffees in the unassuming and perfect stand-up coffee shops.  Or perhaps it’s the sizzling sardines, the freshly grilled treasures from the ocean, doused in lemon, garlic, wine and love.  The endless trays of prawns and clams, of thick, hearty stews, of crusty, moorish breads, of my memories of my dad bringing still-warm croissants from your local bakeries to our home every morning. Of the toasts made of your local wines, to the many events, the many loves, and many moments imprinted forever in my heart.

Perhaps it’s the wild dancing, the abandoned screams to the moonlit skies with charmed feet moving nonstop to the beats of your ancient music’s and land.  Of the fervent frenzy of never wanting to stop dancing, of the laughs and exhaustion, dancing barefoot home with the sun rising in the sky, the moon sleeping to the west, searching for that warm croissant to put me to sleep.

Is it those seminal friendships, those hugs, the first taste of your beer, the toasts, the love, the celebrations of high school, of university, of our first jobs, of our second, of our first loves, the loves for life, of weddings, of children, is it those moments you have been instrumental in, been the heartbeat of, to which I am eternally grateful? 

It could be the simplicity of those walks with my mother on your golden sands.  Once a child, taking such pleasure in searching for your oceans treasures, collecting shells, hand in hand with Her. Those moments which have never changed, as I am still  child of your lands, yet the vision now of my own mother.

Portugal, you enrapture me and have loved me as I have loved you honestly, passionately, relentlessly since you first welcomed me to your intoxicating world…how I can’t wait to see how this Great Love continues…thank you for all of your gifts… I love you Portugal.