quarta-feira, 30 de março de 2016

The Long and Winding Road

When I wrote my novel Eu, do Nada (I, From Nothing) I was inspired by the story of my maternal family. Chapter II is all about the French Invasions of 1807-1810 and how my ancestors sought refuge in the forts built by the Portuguese and their English allies.
Now a tourist site (and a place of frolicking for one Tesla-wife), the forts were meant to thwart the Armies of Napoleon and shelter the locals. Built on the crest of the hills around Lisbon, they combined to make the defense lines of the Portuguese capital.
Starting in the now town of Torres Vedras, some 50kms north of Lisbon, they got the name of Torres Lines (Linhas de Torres) and proved their worth by being invencible bulwarks against the invading hordes.
Of course, the roads leading to the forts are no pavement fit for a Tesla Model S. Still, made for carts and canons, they withstood the tests of time (neglect and forgetfulness) and can now by fully appreciated whilst behind the wheel of a super-future-forward electric car.
Who would have guessed?

segunda-feira, 28 de março de 2016

Mountain high

Closer to home still, we climbed to the top of the hill in front of our house. there's an old windmill there.
The local folks call it Moinho do Céu, literal for windmill in the sky ("with diamonds"). The Creature and the Creature's proud owner were pretty much ok with the altitude´on this balmy a day.
But it's the views, mind you, the views that make a visit to Moinho do Céu so worth the while: absolutely stunning! And the valley below? O my, what lush green it is this time of year.
Farthest in the distance the hazy contours of the Montejunto Mountain, which, peaking to an amazing 666metres (just the number, uh?), is the highest mountain in the vicinities of Lisbon. Ain't this a spectular place to own a Tesla?

quinta-feira, 24 de março de 2016

River deep

Taking the Creature for an outing nearby, we thought about water. How about the Tagus? And the Tagus it was. We don't live so far from where it meets the Atlantic and where it is at its widest, just a stone's throw away from Lisbon.
It is the longest river in the Iberian Peninsula. Although it is usually this blue and placid, it is known for its occasional furies when it overflows to flood all the vast plains that stretch as far as the eye can see. The Tagus is also the geographic divide between the rugged North and the flat lands of the South. Ah, the South... How I always long for the South I see on the other shore of the river...
 One of these days, we'll take the Creature south and tell you all about it. For the time being, here we are on the North bank of the mighty Tagus on a fine day of early Spring. A postcard from a place we proudly call... home.
Time to go back to the zillion things that keep a Tesla-wife occupied.

terça-feira, 22 de março de 2016

Je suis Bruxelles!

Because there are days of dread that disgust and outrage. A throwback to 2011 and a sunny day in the streets of Brussels. May terror meet its doom and life resume its course.
Je suis Bruxelles!

segunda-feira, 21 de março de 2016

Leaving Louisiana, Lake Charles

Pitch stop at Lake Charles, Louisiana, for a farewell to the welcoming state and a quick visit to the Tesla supercharger near the state border.
What amazes me as a newcomer to the wondrous world of Tesla and electric mobility is the quantity of superchargers that Tesla has available. I think Elon Musk is really into future-mode.
 Maybe one day charging stations will not be a thing of amazement but as natural an occurence as gas stations. Oh yes, and I'm still always mesmerised by my husband's geekyness as he stares, jaw-dropped, at something he has already seen a gazillion times.
See what I mean?

sábado, 19 de março de 2016

On Father's Day

A throwback to 2011 and our younger days on a trip to Scotland (Hadrian's Wall illustrated above) to commemorate Father's Day. The Portuguese celebrate the date on March 19th, apparently St. Joseph's Day. The Tesla aficionado beside this here Tesla-wife-to-be "fathered" a Model S 85D a few years later. And what doting "father" he turned out to be! What better way to say Happy Father's Day than with a picture of one of his bestest days ever: the day he got his Tesla!
Isn't that the face of sheer happiness?

And Happy Father's Day to all Dads out there!

sexta-feira, 11 de março de 2016

Tesla-free day in New Orleans

Being on the road with Tesla also means we get to enjoy Tesla-free days. On a coast-to-coast roadtrip chasing superchargers we get the odd day out when Tesla is not on the road.
Embracing our time in New Orleans meant discovering its history, strolling along Bourbon Street and the French Quarter, having a go on a steamboat navigating the mighty Mississippi and, yes, for the girl in me, a bit of shopping (why not?).
Being out on the road is all about sipping in the local culture, taking it in from the third-person perspective of the wandering traveller. It's pausing to contemplate otherness in the face. Yes, New Orleans is a whole world unto itself, a crossroads of a multicultural heritage that makes it so unique.
A place where Life and Death coexist in peaceful harmony. Truly and thoroughly enjoyed it!

sexta-feira, 4 de março de 2016

Baton Rouge, LA, and a buffalo burger

It was hot... very hot. We were tired... very tired. Going to Alexandria proved a long day of driving (conventional, as I now need to explain). It was the early detour to Sliddel then the hours-long drive to Alexandria and on our way back to New Orleans, where he had set headquarters for three days, we still wanted to go to the supercharger in Baton Rouge, the state's capital.
More than the driving, it was the heat that knocked us down. My husband drove us from New Orleans to Alexandria. I drove us back and for more than once I had to fight the temptation to doze off. Luckily we got to Baton Rouge unscathed and the supercharger made for a glorious "by night" moment.
The temperature was divine and nearby there was a gourmet burger joint where we were treated to our very first buffalo burgers ever: deliciously yummy (even for non burger lovers)!
It was another great day chasing superchargers. I might add further that Tesla knows where to place its superchargers. I mean, leaving the beasts charging while we indulge in buffalo burgers, how good does it get?