Até mais Lisboa, Olá Meco!

August 08, 2014

By our third day in Lisbon Henry and I could no longer bear the stuffiness of the city. Tired of wilting in the heat like the dregs of a London flower market at the end of a summer's Sunday, we cancelled all our plans for the day and escaped 40 kilometres south of Lisbon to the seaside town of Meco. What transpired was an epic journey; first an hour bus ride through the city of Lisbon including an elevated, breathtaking view of the city's aqueducts, then rumbling over the Tagus river on a bridge as we crossed into southern town of Sesimbra. At Sesimbra we waited for another bus to take us to the picturesque mountain town of Santana where we got lost and spent a very pleasant hour wandering through the Portuguese countryside enjoying the fresh mountain air, walking downhill and following the unmistakable scent of the sea breeze as it carried itself to us from Praia do Meco (Meco beach).











Our idyllic hike, devoid of company but for the occasional working dog or farm animal was just the revitalising respite we needed from the city. Even as we descended from the mountains down to the sea, the elevated air we enjoyed shifted from cool and moist to warm, salty sea breeze. 


It took us at least two hours to get from Lisbon to Meco beach because we chose to get lost and have a wander. Most tourists don't bother with Meco beach unless they have a car because it is a bit of a hassle to get to by public transport. Mostly they flock to the hideously overcrowded Tamariz or Costa de Caparica, which we were keen to avoid, after all if we wanted to drown in tourist soup we would have just stayed in the city. We chose Meco because it is one of the cleanest, peaceful, and refreshing beaches in Lisbon and its isolation makes it popular for nude sunbathing. Not that we indulged in any of that...or did we? That shall forever remain a mystery.


The promised land (sand).




I made Henry pose 'like a narcissistic social-media whore', that is, arched back, chest out, pointed toes, and most come-hither posture befitting of an 'accidental sex kitten'. "Oh, were you taking a picture of me? I wasn't posing, I swear! Tee hee." Later he expressed, "God I don't know how you do it, this constant posturing, it's exhausting." I rolled my eyes: "Darling, don't you know? There is nothing more contrived than the business of being 'naturally camera-ready'." 

Although I don't even bother to conceal that I try (or even blend my sunscreen, I just slather the whole bottle on and pray to be spared of wrinkles just one year more) to capture myself in the most flattering way. This unabashed vanity and unselfconscious celebration of 'me so pretty culture' is very much an Asian thing. 

















We had a long overdue and very late lunch on the beach at Bar do Peixe. A standard fare of fresh seafood followed, the usual goose barnacles, prawns, mussels in white wine, and what we thought was grilled squid on a skewer but turned out to be a huge kebab. Metaphorically buttons straining at the waist, we threw our bloated selves into the sea and let the salty water humour our delusions that we didn't weigh nearly as much as we did (do).





On our way back to Lisbon we very nearly got stranded in Santana if not for the kind intervention of a stranger who informed us that the bus from Santana to Sesimbra we were waiting for had long left and that the bus right in front of us was the only bus heading toward that direction. We hopped onto that strange bus to Sesimbra, caught another one to the ferry port, and then took a ferry across the Tagus back to Lisbon where we called a taxi to take us back to our beds.

Should you wish to visit Meco beach for a spot of naked tranquility, I recommend hiring a car from Lisbon for convenience sake. However if you like a bit of a walk and an adventure, you can take a bus from Lisbon to Sesimbra. From Sesimbra take a bus to Santana and asked to be dropped off as close to Meco village as possible. Walk through the mountains and woodlands of Meco, downhill, until you see the signs pointing you to Meco beach. The refreshing Atlantic waters, warm sand, and peaceful isolation is well worth the journey. Just be sure to get a copy of the bus timetables so you don't miss the buses on the way back. x



9 comments:

  1. I don't think the 'me so pretty culture' is an Asian thing, well maybe it is but for one particular London blogger the unabashed self confidence definitely comes from the aid of Photoshop.

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    1. Oh blessed Photoshop! Without it the internet would be a much less pretty place. If only the goggles didn't have to come off in real life. :( x

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  2. *love* the arched back photos both you and Henry did - hilarious that a certain London blogger tries to imply this is a totally natural position.

    In all seriousness, love your bikini, you look very content and relaxed, its lovely to see :) x

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    1. The very notion of 'blogging' implies contrivance---curating a digital version of reality to pander to a certain audience. Bloggers are really content creators and it's a foolish blogger who'd deny otherwise! Just embrace the hard work that goes into every frame, composition, and shot is what I say. :)
      Thank you for your kind words! x

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    2. *'embrace and admit to', sorry! x

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  3. Regina George (Post-Bus)August 12, 2014

    Gorgeous photos as usual, but I particularly love the last one of the town lit up across the water. Just lovely, and so summery.

    Pleeeeease make faux-seksy poses by Henry a regular feature. Next up: Standing on tiptoes to create the illusion of a thigh gap!

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    1. Haha! The funny thing is he has much better legs than I do. Closeups of his 'thigh gap' would get more 'likes' than mine. -_-
      x

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  4. Hi, may I know where do you get your bikini? Lovely :) x

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