Raised by writers, nurses, teachers, tennis players… we are constant learners.

We have many questions. And you probably do, too. So here goes.

Donny is 68, Janet is 62, Stella is 8.

We are looking for a place to “retire”. Maybe Portugal.

We must go check it out.

Photo taken at Bryce Canyon, Utah. Bright wintery day. Donny Stella Janet

Hello Friends

Hello dear friends… We are not currently “Discovering Portugal” as the title suggests. We are safe and sound in Northern California, and like many, we are not able to travel. But today, I came across this article which I hope you will be able to access. I will paste the link here. We wait and watch with love hoping to return to Portugal.

If you are visiting this site for the first time I think it now reads backwards!! With the last post first … There are 82 short posts starting about a week before we left for Portugal in January 2020 and I posted each day as we explored!


Donny isolating on the front porch. Fort Myers. Orchids,rain chain and lots of green foliage.

Our dear friend Barbara B. said…”Oh I miss your blog.” What a beautiful thing to say. We miss it, too. So here’s a day in our lives in Fort Myers.

Janet made gazpacho.
And we picked coconuts.
Coconut drinks too. Sorry about the plastic straws. They were here. We will recycle.
Listening to The Milk Carton Kids on laptop. Also learned to zoom.

Love to you all. And Barbara.


Janet and Stella in the hammock.
Donny and Jack and Jack’s dog Max and Stella.

We are self-isolating here with Jack at his place in Fort Myers.

Wishing you all the very very very best and thank you for being a part of our Portugal journey. We hope to go back to Portugal when the time is right for further exploring. We absolutely totally loved the experience.

Janet, Donny, and Stella.


This is brief… we made it to Boston last night. Onward today to Fort Myers Florida. Mental exhaustion much more than physical.

Stella and Donny in Lisbon

More later about travel and re-entry. All industry workers exhausted too but doing great job. Only 1 hour to process through screening thanks to a slew of Boston EMTs and PARAMEDICS manning the process behind large tables.

Boston is a ghost town. No traffic. Such a shock to see.

We do not have to quarantine but must moniter our selves.


PHOTO OF A CORK BICYCLE. I didn’t know what image to post and so this ended up being my choice. It’s beautiful

Everything is changing so fast. Yesterday Donny and I made the decision to fly back to the United States. As of now, we are booked to fly out tomorrow, Tuesday March 17, from Lisbon to Boston with touchdown in the Azores. We won’t get off the plane in the Azores.

If all goes well, we will be on that plane for about 10 hours, which is a lot longer than we would ever wish for Stella but right now that is our best option.

We don’t know what to expect at Logan Airport but again, hoping for the best. Expecting the unexpected.

After Boston, we are scheduled to fly to Fort Myers the next day, Wednesday March 18, where we have a great place to stay for as long as needed. Surrounded by friends and family.

Life in Portugal remains calm and organized but they, too, are experiencing great uncertainty and things change constantly. Yesterday the beaches were all officially closed, most restaurants are now closed or take/out only. The grocery stores are open and well-stocked. They allow 10 people at a time into the store. People who don’t need to be here, are leaving.

So we are packing up today, driving to Lisbon tomorrow morning, and poised to head out.

I will post here again over the next days.


Exceptionally charming and superb little restaurant in Sagres called Mum’s.
Italian owners who have worked in the restaurant business all over the world, now live in Sagres.
The place settings all different wine box covers.


One of the gals who works the front desk at Pontalaia where we stay mentioned that her friends had opened their restaurant for the season and that we should stop by. And because last night was our 9th Anniversary.. we did.

Simply phenomenal. These industry professionals have brought all of their love and warmth to this small spot and words can’t do the experience justice. Our waiter was simply the best: gorgeous Italian accent and all. And twenty years as a sommelier all over the world. He spoiled us.

The food is all locally sourced and organic. Janet had grilled octopus on some kind of amazing barley. The octopus is caught every day by a local fisherman on the beach here. Donny had pumpkin raviolis. Everything was confident, relaxed, and just divine.

We stayed for five hours. Leaving at midnight.

There were a few other people there, which right now is allowed. A couple from Sweden, a couple from Gibraltar…

I did feel as if we were in a movie.


Stella and Janet on early morning walk looking out across the cliffs. One person fishing from the beach. Calm ocean.

As of now….

BOSTON LOGAN is one of the 13 airports for entry.

Then you get screened and sent on to your final destination. And you agree to self-isolate for 14 days.

Our return tickets are still for April 5. Portugal-Boston-Fort Myers.

Monitoring the constant changes.

Portugal has issued “State of alert.” Schools closed along with many other agencies and no large gatherings.

We hear that some of the areas near the cities have run out of toilet paper but we have not experienced that. Yet…

We are taking good care of ourselves and hoping the same for everyone.


Ian Wallace Lay and Ashley Roper and baby River. Thank you for sending me this photo!!

Thirty four years ago I gave birth to Ian on Cape Cod, Massachusetts. And now he and his lovely lady, Ashley, are expecting water baby River. Here they are in Fort Myers, Florida. The baby (boy or girl? nobody knows?) expected in mid-June.

I am so thankful for the internet and WHATSAPP and for being able to communicate so easily across the world.

Love from Portugal. See you soon.