Tastes of Home in Lisbon

Rachel Thompson
April 21, 2014

Last Friday, I took a quick flight to Lisbon to meet my family for spring break. I waited eagerly at the arrival gate, watching as each new traveler passed through the doors, hoping it was them. When they finally came through, I ran over to the ramp to hug them for the first time since January.

Lisbon, as it turned out, was a perfect city for our reunion. Portugal’s capital city had some striking resemblances to San Francisco, the city closest to our home in California. Most obvious is the 25th of April Bridge, built in 1966, inspired by the Golden Gate Bridge. As we stood on the bank of the Tagus River, trying to snap a picture of the bridge, the city’s breezy weather and fog further reminded me of home.

Lisbon is also known for the colorful cable cars that wind up and down its streets. The city’s hilly avenues in Bairro Alto were quite similar to the calf-straining ups and downs of San Francisco.

While San Franciscans certainly enjoy their sweets, Lisbon is known for a treat of its own: Pastel de Nata, a creamy, custard-filled pastry. We found a line of people waiting outside the Antigua Confeitaria de Belem, hungry for the city’s signature pastry, and decided we had to try it. The antique café is part of historic Belem and the pastels seemed to disappear as soon as the waiter set down the plate.

But the sweetest taste of home was seeing my mom, dad and little brother, who flew from San Francisco to Munich to Lisbon just to visit me for spring break. Together, we explored, ate and enjoyed each other’s company in a new city. I’ll always remember Lisbon that way.

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Rachel Thompson

<p><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">Hi there! I&#39;m a California native studying journalism in one of the coolest cities in the world, at The University of Texas at Austin. I&#39;m a fan of chocolate, watching sports (go Giants), nice people, anything vintage and pretty much all music. I write as much as I can, whether it&#39;s a news article, a blog, or just a journal entry. When I&#39;m not writing, I love to run, try new recipes in my little kitchen, take dance classes and catch up with friends. My goal is to see every continent someday. I&#39;m getting there!</span></p>

2014 Spring
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