Modern life. Staring into a screen instead of taking in one of the most beautiful Western European capitals.

Marques Pombal palace and park. Newly renovated fountain. Oeiras, 2021.

Cascais, 2015

I love a nicely laid table. This one in the Hotel Albatros in Cascais. And, yes, those are fish knives and forks.

Trafaria, 2014

We hatched a plan to live in Trafaria, across the river from Lisbon. It didn’t survive the week we spent there. The packs of feral dogs barking through the night were a factor.

Moscow, 2001

One Sunday morning we trudged through virgin snow on the outskirts of Moscow to visit a craft market. It felt like a scene from Dr Zhivago.

Olympus OM-2

Cafe Nicola, Rossio Square, Lisbon during first lockdown July 2020

Usually impossible to get a seat on the terrace at this old-fashioned cafe in central Lisbon. During the first lockdown we had three waiters arguing over who would serve us. When we were served we had the best gin & tonic I have ever had. Just Gordons, with regular Schweppes served over ice and lemon in a balloon glass.

Fujifilm X100

Esposende, Portugal, October 2020

We visited this small town north of Porto on the strength of an article in Monocle. The article highlighted the mid-century architecture of the second-homes built for the elite from the wealthy towns of the north during the 1950s and 1960s. It is indeed a charming town, good for cycling and eating fish.

Nokia 7.2 Snapseed

Clare, Kaffee Haus, Lisbon, 2020

Highly recommended if you need a break from Portuguese or bland international cuisine. Authentically Austrian sausages and schnitzel, washed down with Gruner Veltliner or Austrian beer.

Notice the copy of Bob Dylan’s latest album propped nonchalantly on the chair next to Clare. I’d just bought it in FNAC. Very properly they don’t give out plastic bags. The disc (discs it’s a double) was shrink wrapped so I just carried it out like that. It got home unscathed and it’s fantastic late-period Dylan. His best in years, no question.

Nokia 7.2 Snapseed