Roger, Wilco, and… um… Astrid!

Roger Wilco.jpgFor you youngsters, “roger, wilco, and out!” is an old military term. But Wilco, our friend from Holland, elected to bring his partner Astrid instead of his other partner Out, so we have to make due with what we have, at least as far as headlines are concerned.

In any case, we were honored to receive a visit from these two royals from Holland. At least they said they were royals. We had to believe them because we don’t speak Dutch, so there was no way to confirm it.

Speaking of which, the combination of The Netherlands, Holland, and Dutch confuses me. Three completely different words. How do people living in Holland become known as Dutch? It’s like saying, “I’m from America, so I’m an Oopa Loompa.” They tried to answer my question as best they could, but in the end, they just threw me in the pool.

IMG_8131Here we celebrate their successful landing in Lisbon. We’ll only tell you how dangerous Lisbon’s airport is if we don’t want you to visit.

IMG_1032Here we serenade Wilco by belting out an aria from our favorite opera. He’s smiling now, but after a few more verses, he was ready to jump off the wall.

IMG_8134This is the scene from the aforementioned wall. The Sesimbra Castle dominates the skyline over Sesimbra, and affords impressive views, capture-able even by lousy photographers like me. And of course, we still like castles.

IMG_1048If that doesn’t look like the wave of a royal, I don’t know what does. His Secret Service agent is offering protection.

IMG_8135Carolyn’s gonna hate this picture.

IMG_8137The Dutch, at least insofar as one couple represents all of Dutchendom, seem to enjoy kissing a lot. I took to carrying around a spray bottle and would douse them anytime they got too carried away. The Portuguese are a shy people, which is why you don’t see a lot of Dutch people in Portugal.

IMG_8145Lunch by the sea with Sangria. Or is it Astrid? I’m bad with names.

IMG_8159Astrid enjoys a morning swim with her coffee. She was the only one brave enough to jump into the chilly water. Or maybe she warmed the water up by pouring her coffee in; the pool did seem a little darker when she got out.

IMG_8170There they go kissing again in front of the Cabo Espechel lighthouse.

One thing no one warned us about in regards to the Dutch is that shortly after their arrival, the city rushed in and began laying sewer pipe. I think the septic tank guy called them begging them to do this after getting tired of being called back to the house four times in one day just to empty the tank. This may be why they call all their territories The Netherlands: the Dutch do some weird things with their nether regions.

IMG_8185Wilco demonstrates his masterful pool cleaning skills. He is a very handy (and energetic) guy to have around. If Astrid ever dumps him, we’re gonna have him come live with us. Actually, we’ll take ’em both anytime!

IMG_8188This is the Pantheon (Panteo) right by our apartment in Alfama. Wilco pretends to be Rocky here, but he actually only ran up the last step.

IMG_8192Wilco is an aspiring model and Astrid is an aspiring photographer. Since it was a warm day, I was just a perspiring tourist.

IMG_8197Kissing again. And with the tongues now! Oh for heaven’s sake! Get a room!

IMG_8199Finally, a shot where they’re not kissing. Good God! Anyway, this is at Sao George Castle, which is one of the main attractions of Lisbon. In the background is the 25 de Abril bridge, which used the same blueprints as the Golden Gate Bridge. The Portuguese like to name things after dates, but they kind of messed up because there’s only 366 of those, which is why they decided to keep the country relatively small.

IMG_8202Still at Sao George Castle. While the castle dates back many centuries, it was in the late 14th century that the castle was dedicated to Saint George. You thought the “sao” (pronounced “sow”) was a pig, didn’t you?

IMG_8204Here Wilco demonstrates how to pickpocket a purse. We can’t show the next picture because there was too much blood. Don’t try and steal from Astrid, that’s all we’re sayin’.

IMG_8207I just had to take a shot of this electric car being charged by an extension cord dangling from the third floor.

IMG_8208We were in the middle of Lisbon (actually Commerce Square) before the World Cup match between Portugal and Iran was to be played. The mood was festive!

All in all, we had a wonderful visit with this delightful couple. In fact, I think Astrid and Wilco should write a book entitled, “How to Be a Perfect House Guest.” They were charming, interesting, funny, unobtrusive, helpful, easygoing, and Wilco sweeps a mean pool. Plus they offered to pay good money for each positive adjective.

We were very happy to have shown them around Lisbon as well as just chill out by the pool. They both work very hard, so this wasn’t just a visit to sightsee, they enjoyed the relaxing aspect of just sitting on our patio, soaking up the sun, and enjoying the company.

We also went to the nearby beach for an afternoon. The ladies insisted that I not take any pictures of them in bathing suits, but being the scoundrel that I am, I made sure we posed for a friendly passerby who took our shot. I’m sorry, ladies, you’re just gonna have to deal with it.

With Astrid & Wilco at the beach

I love my wife

That’s it.

That’s all I got for this entry. There’s nothing more important anyway.

My charming, sweet, and beautiful wife sips on sangria while we wait for tapas in Mojácar Spain. We took a short trip to Spain to escape the unseasonably wet and cold weather in Portugal. Turns out a relaxing vacation of doing not a whole lot is still great to do even when you’re retired!