wed 28 dec 2011 22:59:02 hotel pestana porto
postigo do carvao
today i worked more on the transcripts from my notes for gabo s. then i went to dinner at the restaurant called 'postigo do carvao', which as it happens is the same name as the alley that leads to the arch in the big old wall under my hotel. on the way there i noticed an alley cat eating something from on top of a folded piece of newspaper at the corner of the alley.
i was the first one to walk in to the postigo restaurant, and i asked if i could eat there, and if so, when. the man said now and sit anywhere here. then other people started to come in. it's a very stony place, gray stone floor and speckled granite stone walls. and outside ish, because the lamps inside were like streetlamps outside. kinda cold when i first walked in. then other people started coming in. a couple sat in front of me. he spoke both german and portuguese, she mainly german. she was wearing a suburban blouse with a belt at the waist, whitish with tiny black poodle icons every ten centimeters. at one point she went to scratch her right side, using her left hand, but reaching behind herself, as if to hide her hand from the cute thick-bearded young man she was with. in fact she was rather an attractive person, too bad about the suburb.
i had first the cabbage soup, whitish green, hot and yummy, and the man told me it was called 'caldo verde' something like that. for main course i had a beef with mushroom sauce, that was pretty yummy and copious. i also asked for a liter of vinho tinto called 'aciprestos'. drank as much of that as i could handle during dinner, but didn't finish it. i ate most of the creamy beef, but saved in a tissue a couple of chunks, then after i paid my a conto and left (again cheap, i think the bill was 28 and i pushed it to 40 with a big tip) i went back to that corner and left my beef chunks on the bit of newspaper for eventual cats. then i wandered down the alley to where i found a beautiful old stone stair, and went up there and hung out for a while smoking on the upper level, then i went down another stair out to the praça da ribeira and stood there just looking around for a while. then i went inside.
i knew filipa would be working at the hotel bar tonight because duarte told me (it's not eduardo, it's duarte! sorry for the previous misspellings.) she gave me a glass of white porte of calem. then i had another white port of another make, i forget which. we talked about life in portugal, how everybody thinks it's terrible economically, people are having fear of jobs and contracts, how the prime minister suggested that anyone who can teach should leave the country and go teach elsewhere, etc. i invited her and her boyfriend paolo for dinner on saturday, the concensus being that the only good fish restaurants are in matesinhos, a town not far from here. i might venture over there if someone were with me, but i don't wanna go all the way out there alone.
filipa also recommended another restaurant on the same little street, rua da fonte taurina, which is called 'ode' and sounds like awda.she said that is a very good restaurant. so maybe i should try there tomorrow. she gave me their card. i dunno if i will be going back up the hill again to the lady from barreta encarnada (the little bar incarnate?) ... can't eat at the same place every night!
i had a good sleep last night and also this afternoon for 3 hrs.
i got mail from carol. sounds like she wants to spend christmas next year somewhere *not* where she is now. maybe fez maybe ams. same time next year, inshallah, if i'm alive, i probably will want to be absent again from ams. i like the way this works. to be in amsterdam for all the many times i love it, and to be afwezig for the times i fucking hate it. good theory.
i hope to do some more either writing or transcribing a bit later.