Did ya miss me??

Yes, I’ve been quite the slacker lately.  I’ve been to Canada and back and I still haven’t gotten my blog out on Portugal! I did this on purpose…totally…I wanted to see how many of you were actually reading…

Surprisingly (to myself), I have been nudged about getting my blog out. There’s been quite a few days where Ryan walks by my desk and says “Are you done your blog yet?”, followed by a text “Done yet?”. When I got home to visit family and friends in Canada (ooo another blog to write!) more people were saying the same things.  But the truth is…every time I try to write about it, it sounds crappy. It could just be that I’m being too critical of myself, but honestly I sounded like a child telling a story with no other way to connect sentences other than using  “and thennnnn….and thennnnn”.   I have no clue where my creativeness went for this blog, but it seemed lost. SO, think I’ve come to the conclusion that I will give you the highlights of our trip and what happened. This way, no one gets bored.

First some background history:

The lovely people we went to Portugal with are Duncan and Lexie. Look at how cute they are!

Duncan is purposely making this silly face, it’s not just a badly-timed picture!


Honestly these two are the cutest. Duncan is a hilariously funny gentleman from Toronto, while Lexie is a tiny, hamstery girl from northern Ontario. I say hamstery because when she really gets laughing, she sounds a bit like a hamster running on a hamster wheel. But these are Duncan’s words! Not mine! He actually pointed this out to us on our trip, which only fueled our laughter, and Lexie’s hamster giggles. I was in tears from this (from laughing too hard).

Anywhos, Duncan and Ryan are like twins when it comes to their personalities; both goofy and a lot of fun! Ryan and I met Duncan at university about 3 years ago; we were all on the rowing team. I actually didn’t know for a while that Duncan’s first name was Ryan. I guess they needed to find a way to differentiate the two goofballs!

Perfect description of these two


Because of their twin-like personalities, they became fast friends and decided when Ryan left for China, that we would meet somewhere half way. Although for flight purposes, Portugal is NOT half way. Ryan and I had to fly 10 hours to Frankfurt with a 4 hour layover, and another 4 hours to Portugal, while Duncan and Lexie only had 6 hours total! The trip was definitely worth it though, so I’m not complaining. This was mine and Ryan’s first trip out of Asia, so it was pretty exciting to get away.

We were really looking forward to being on an all- inclusive resort, with zero to worry about, and more than enough food and drink you could ask for. Honestly…all-inclusives should have a warning sign saying “May not want to wear a 2 piece at the end of vacation” or “You will seriously need to hit the gym when you get home”. I think my goal for ONE time going to an all-inclusive would be to NOT indulge. I think if I could accomplish that, I can accomplish anything. I’ll let you know if that ever happens, but don’t hold your breath.

Feeling’s after being at a resort…


Anyways. The first 4 days of our vacation was not at an all-inclusive (I’m sure my body is thankful of this). Our first stop was in Porto, which was rich with Port wine. Previous to Porto, I have yet to try port wine. This is surprising giving the fact that my dad is Italian, and I used to work with wine! So I was a bit shocked with how sweet the wine was when I tasted it, considering how dark it looked.

Our events in Porto were filled with tonnes of laughter; I bet being jet-lagged contributed to my uncontrollable laughter. There were about 3 times that I distinctly remember not being able to stop laughing. Here they are!

Finding our way to a wine tour:

After our gondola ride over the city of Porto, we were trying to find our way to a wine tasting tour we had in mind. Because Duncan isn’t so great at directions, and was leading the way, Lexie and I were hesitant to follow. But adventure is the purpose of travel, so if we got lost, why not! Going down a cobblestone hill, with small apartments located on either side, the two Ryan’s noticed something hilarious that Lexie and I didn’t catch on until after all of our laughter had stopped.

Imagine a mother, not particularly athletic, trying to push her toddler up a cobblestone hill in a stroller. The toddler, having no control over the situation, had his head whipping in all directions due to the uneven ground and the force with which the mother was pushing. I suppose at the right time, one Ryan said “That kids going for a f**king ride”, which caused the other one to crack up. Lexie and I were standing there for a bit waiting for an explanation, but every time one of them tried to speak they kept giggling all over again. Because I know this feeling all too well, I joined in on the contagious laughter, with no real reason as to why I was laughing. But who needs a reason to laugh anyways!!

 Our first dinner in Portugal:

It was our first dinner together in Portugal, and we had picked a place right along the water that we heard was supposed to be really good. We stepped into the restaurant and told the male host that there are 4 of us that would like to sit inside (the tables to sit outside could only fit 2 people). Because of this, he had to push 2 tables together for us. Duncan, eager to help, went over to push the tables together when the host stops him in his tracks “No, please, allow me”. At this point Duncan already had the tables together, so really the host was just adjusting to make it look perfect. Duncan looks at Ryan, Ryan looks back; and they start giggling.. Lexie and I again, still don’t fully understand what exactly is so funny, but we both end up in tears with the laughter these guys have passed on. Honestly I was stuck at the table for about 5 minutes shaking silently from laughter. I must’ve been really exhausted!

 Loss of attention, or rather Lexie’s talents in capturing attention during a walk:

Our next stop at laughter lane was when we were walking by the water. It was our last day in Porto and we wanted to do some relaxing walking around. At one point we needed to go down a set of 3 large steps, but for some reason the only person that noticed this was Lexie. At the perfect time, Lexie seemed to capture our attention and we all looked at her as we were approaching our first step down. Lexie managed to make it down no problem, but the rest of us found that our feet took way too long to touch the ground; were shocked and confused with what had just happened. Luckily, only a couple knees buckled but no one fell down! We all started to laugh because we can’t remember what Lexie said that was so intriguing!


After Porto, we took a 3 hour train ride to Lisbon. It was mostly at this time when the boys started their beer diet; “eat some beers” is what they called it for the rest of the trip.

When we made it to Lisbon, we found our way to our next Air Bnb location. This place was super adorable; perfect for short people. The bathroom had a slanted ceiling so it was impossible for anyone except Lexie (she’s so tiny), to fully stand up. In fact, the boys made a comment on how they couldn’t stand up to pee!! Luckily the rest of the apartment was normal ceiling height, but everything was pretty packed together. Thankfully, most items were from IKEA so the owners were able to utilize the space well!

My most vivid memory of this part of the trip included our creepy neighbour that I had no idea existed. It was the one night we decided to get dressed up and go out for dinner after our day of touring around the city. I wanted to straighten my hair, but because the bathroom was so tiny I had to do it in the kitchen. We were all enjoying some drinks, or rather, the boys were eating their beers in the living room. Lexie and I were sipping our drinks in the kitchen/bedroom while we were getting ready (I say kitchen/bedroom since there was a pullout bed right beside the kitchen table) .

Here’s Lexie on the pullout doing some Lisbon research.


Check out these love bugs: where they were during the scene of the crime.


There was a nice long mirror I sat in front of while straightening my hair while Lexie and I were chatting away. Where I was sitting happened to be in front of the kitchen sink, which was also in front of the window we had open for a nice breeze. I don’t know for how long this went on for, but I guess I was so preoccupied with straightening my hair and talking that I didn’t realize what was happening. I suddenly got the feeling as if I was being watched.

—-You know that feeling when you’re watching a thriller movie and you get a glimpse of a person that gives you the chills, realizing how mentally twisted they are? You feel as though they are right there in your room, but are also happy that it’s just a movie. WELL, this happened to me in real life. And I couldn’t shake the feeling for a while. —

I turn around and notice the neighbour, about 10 feet away, staring at me through his window. He doesn’t look worried that I noticed he was there, he doesn’t even flinch one bit! He just continues to stare at me, his eyes unblinking. I look at him for about 2 seconds before I gasp and try and hide. I bend over in my chair, trying to get out of his view from the mirror and the window. I whisper to Lexie, as if I’m scared of him hearing me and trying to kill me “Lexie, the window! Someone’s there!”. Confused, she slowly walks over and peeks over the window for a quick glimpse. Her reaction is similar to mine: eyes wide and fairly fearful, “Oh my gosh, that’s creepy”. Both Ryan’s notice how quiet we got and are wondering what’s going on. Luckily, from where my Ryan is sitting, he gets a glimpse of the man STILL creeping through his window. He walks over and sees the man continuing to stand there, until the man moves his arm to very slowly close the shutters; all the while still staring at Ryan. “What the F**k!” he says.

Yes, WTF is right!! I still have the image of him imprinted on my memory: shirtless, skin and bones, wispy white hair, large sunken eyes…


…yeah that’s pretty close.

I felt partially worried for my life, because I think I got the feeling as if his brain was not right. But, we all agreed that he was just a harmless, creepy old man. If he did try to climb across the roof into our apartment, it would be no problem for the Ryan’s to deal with. But that night, we closed and locked all the windows before going out just to be safe. Even the bathroom window…which only a toddler could fit through…

This is the view from our kitchen window to the creepy old man’s window. It was the big window he was looking through…pretty darn close!




Our next stop was in the Algarves: resort time!! This was our time to indulge in everything we shouldn’t, and maybe regret it the next day. There were many, many laughs through this part of the trip as well, but again I’ll highlight a few!

There was the one night Duncan made Ryan throw up.

This video pretty much explains it all! Lexie and Duncan came into our room before we were on our way out, and Duncan had the brilliant idea to go to the balcony door and act this scene out.


How did this make Ryan throw up? Well at the same time Duncan did this, Ryan had just sipped some water. Tortured between spitting it all over the place, and trying to keep it in, he ended up sort of drowning himself, which made him gag, which allowed him enough time to make it to the sink to throw up. All that for not wanting to spit out a bit of water!! It did make for some good laughs though…but that was after he stopped puking. Bleh!

A man we had played volleyball with tried giving us a geography lesson with his feet.

Volleyball was how we kept ourselves from being bored. The guys would play it for about 4 hours a day. Lexie and I would join in sometimes (we needed to relax and tan too!), but the Ryan’s were fully committed. One of the guys we had been playing volleyball with was a fun (drunk), 6’4″ (just guessing, but he was tall), full out speedo, Polish man. For some reason we were talking about whisky (I think it was his favourite drink) and he was trying to explain where different types of whiskey’s were from. This lead to his really bad geography lesson, where he stomped his foot to show where a country was. “This (stomp), is Canada, this (stomp) is Russia, this (stomp) is China….”. I think he could have used a map at this point! Nothing made sense, but it was hilarious to see him try.

It’s a tonic!

That same polish guy tried to convince people he was just drinking a tonic, when it was actually beer. “It’s a tonic!”, he would say all throughout volleyball games, or if we saw him around the resort. The Ryan’s kept using that phrase for the rest of the vacation, for absolutely any alcoholic beverage.


This evening both Ryan’s were a bit out of control..I dunno, maybe alcohol had something to do with it?? We had just gotten back to our rooms to get ready for our dinner, and both Ryan’s were like kids who were given too much candy. We each went to our designated rooms, which were beside each other, and getting ready was not an easy task. We had told Duncan and Lexie we would be ready in 30 minutes, but as time went on I assured Ryan I would not be ready on time anymore (aka quit bugging me while I’m trying to get ready!). We got a phone call from Duncan saying Lexie wasn’t going to be ready on time either, which I was really relieved to hear! I should have known her Ryan would have been doing the same thing to her! When Lexie was ready she came over to our room, and all I had left to do was put my shoes on. But at this point it’s impossible with BOTH Ryan’s together. We kicked the Ryan’s out of the room and told them we’d be out when were ready (ha!). We both shared our experiences of trying to get ready with a drunk Ryan around, laugh, and then turn out the lights as we’re going out the door. As we step out, we only see one Ryan in the hall (my Ryan). His face looks guilty and I’m not sure what’s going on…”Where’s Duncan?”, I ask. “Oh you guys are done already….oh” he says. I realize what’s happening so I rush back into the room and Duncan comes through the balcony door!! He climbed across his balcony onto ours!! And it’s not like these balconies were only separated by a divider…he actually had to climb across the outside wall. I was really concerned that he would have fallen off given that he was a bit inebriated. I mean, we were pretty high up so if he fell I’m sure the rest of the vacation wouldn’t be so enjoyable! “I’m scared of heights, and I climbed across the balcony for you guys…you weren’t even there! We laugh (and roll our eyes), as his thoughts of scaring people went to a whole different level.

So, some things I learned on this trip:

  1. You can’t expect or hope for two Ryan’s to behave when they’re together.
  2. Vacation will be guaranteed that much more fun when you have two Ryan’s together.
  3. Their bachelor parties would be a hell of a lot of fun!!

But despite what I learned about these two, I had an awesome time with our friends and Portugal was beautiful. The people were nice too! (despite that creepy old man….). Overall a well spent vacation 🙂

Here are some cool pictures of our trip! Enjoy!

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2 thoughts on “Portugal

  1. Love it. I think I almost had the same laughing fits you had, just reading your blog. We might need to invite Duncan and Lexi on a family vacation too :).
    Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

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