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Beijos / Kisses

“My solo trip to Portugal has ended.

10 days that I will never forget.

10 days to understand so many things about myself and what matters to me in life and people and love and relationships and photography.

I have met so many people along the way. I am always amazed by the fact of how connected we all are as humans - no matter where we live on this planet: wonderful people with great souls who want to connect and feel warmth and love and be understood. I photograph all these people, their eyes, and I see these same humanity no matter where I go: we are separated by languages and country boundaries but we are the same: fragile, loving and caring.

My trip wouldn’t be the same without meeting these beautiful souls - dear Joao who was so kind and generous enough to dedicate a day to show me around and introduce me to pastel de nata and run with me back to the restaurant in the drizzling rain because I left my umbrella. And Eurico and Ligia and Diogo-Photographer and Fabio who are all such beautiful souls who went out to shoot early in the morning with me when Porto was just waking up - guys, this meant so much for me, and how we smoked mixed tobacco and weed and walked up the hills observing the empty city. And Hugo and Alex from Brazil who we watched at sunset over Porto drinking old Porto wine and listening to a street musician singing “Hey Jude” by The Beatles and how I almost left my camera in the restroom and totally freaked out that it got stolen. And Sergio - how we drank wine and listened to music and talked endlessly and how we both wore black and had so much in common and said goodbyes late in a foggy night to each other the day before I left - and I went to shoot the fog after that at 4 am because I couldn’t sleep and didn’t want to miss this opportunity.

And dear Diogo - little Libra with Moon in Cancer and Venus in Scorpio (great combo!) - i am eternally grateful for your time: taking me to the corner with cheapest drinks in the town, and your tipsy friend Fransisco with his introverted date, and how you fell asleep on the couch in the club, and our morning brunch, and how you texted me the very last day five hours before departure when I thought I wouldn’t see you again, and we listened to church bells ringing, and how I was thinking about how perfect everything is going.

And of course, my dear Mark - love of my life, who’s presence I was feeling throughout the whole trip and who couldn’t come with me because of his word and integrity. We were so far from each other but I knew that back there in NYC I have him and Stiva and that he is waiting for me there and missing me and that laundry will be done and folded when I come back home. I love you till hell and back.

And I am writing this being tipsy on board of my flight back to New York and I feel so happy and content and sad and loved.

Portugal, you are special. There is no place like you. Mysterious, simple, naive, but gorgeous, charming, kind, generous, saudade. I will need some time to fully realize what a gift you are."

And now - back to regular life. Dreaming about you. “

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