Lisbon, Portugal. Saturday afternoon, somewhere far from the city center.
I like this cafe, edged in fading sunlight, that flanks a nondescript park.
I like sitting by myself and soaking in unknown smells that will soon be memories.
I like following conversation like it’s music, unaware of any meaning beyond what I can discern from the melody.
I like sitting on the metro and not understanding a word anyone says.
I like struggling to understand basic signage.
I like not being sure whether the sign on the door says “push” or “pull.”
I like ordering from a menu at random.
I like not being sure which way to look before crossing the street…and then checking both ways twice, just to be safe.
I like when buildings surprise me by speaking, and streets by staying silent.
I like uneven cobblestones, and I like parts of cities no one tells you to go to because they are boring.
I like when a bus ride is an adventure; a walk around the block a quest.
I like feeling out of place.
I like blending in and feeling like I’ve gotten away with something.
I like when it’s not too easy.
I like when nothing can be taken for granted.
Most of all, I like getting lost in the unfamiliar, which renders humility not a choice, but an inevitable outcome.
It is good to be back here.