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Is Lagos, Portugal Our Soul Place?


The Australian Aborigines and the Native Americans believe that each person has one place in the natural world where they most belong. They call it a “soul place” and to these cultures it is where your innermost being feels most at home; a place where there is an instant feeling of belonging and connection.



And that’s part of what Carla and I are doing on our journey . . . searching for our Soul Place . . . possibly our next home.



This brings us back to our blog post from last week. Lagos, Portugal ticks a lot of boxes for us. We love the year-round beautiful weather, we love being walking distance to a gorgeous coast, and we love the walkability and friendliness of the town. In addition, the food is fantastic, the fact that English is widely spoken is a big plus for us, and it’s wonderful to feel safe in a town and not to worry about walking home from somewhere late at night.



We are also quite happy with what appears to be the compassionate nature of Portugal’s politics. For example, Portugal is a very LGBTQ-friendly country, and there are no laws against homosexuality. In fact, Portugal was the first country in the world to decriminalize homosexuality. The country is also home to some of the most LGBTQ-friendly cities in the world, such as Lisbon and Porto. How countries treat people that we seem to diminish here in the United States is very important to us as we look to find a new home. Along these lines, during the worst of the Covid -Pandemic, the Portuguese government gave residency to all migrants and asylum seekers already in the country so they could have access to health care, welfare benefits, banks, and other services. That level of compassion from the government of any country is very appealing to us.



What we have come to realize is that there are two “must haves” for us in our search. First, we want to live on the coast. For Carla and me, the ocean is energizing and inspiring, and our beings thrive being near it. We also want a very walkable town. We became keenly aware of this when we returned to the states for three months over the holidays and were in our cars all the time. We do not need a car for daily errands and shopping here and that suits us very well.



So . . . yes, we could easily and comfortably live in Lagos. It’s not perfect, but we don’t necessarily expect to find perfect. We want to be realistic, even in our idealism. We know that we will want to continue traveling throughout Europe and the Algarve airport (located in Faro 65km away) isn’t quite as convenient as we would like. And, with a town as small as Lagos, we wonder if we might outgrow it, or perhaps get a bit bored. But no place is likely to tick every box and right now Lagos is feeling very good to us. Is it our Soul Place? That’s difficult to say. But we love the overall feel of this town and are happy to have found a place that excites and energizes us enough that we might call it home in the future.

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6 Comments


Simcha- doesn’t look like my comments all came through but if you press edit it seems like everything shows up so good luck!

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Simcha
Simcha
Apr 06, 2023
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Hi Mike - I think they actually came through and I just replied.

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Simcha-

Ditto to Jim’s thoughtful questions. Good, sunny weather, relaxed, walkable, safe town are good boxes to check off. An accommodating, open-minded government is helpful too. If you settle in Europe, you’ll enjoy a never-ending treasure-chest of historical and artistic delights to keep you stimulated intellectually and emotionally…all within a short plane ride away, so I wouldn’t worry too much about what exactly is right at your doorstep. More good boxes checked off. We too, have an affinity for the sea, but— for now- we satisfy our fix with so much time spent every winter in the Caribbean and other water spots around the world. Eventually, however, it will likely have to be a full time proximity for us. what ab…


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Simcha
Simcha
Apr 06, 2023
Replying to

Hi Mike - and thank you for your thoughtful reply. You raise good points and we are mindful that falling in love with a place is easier than living there day-in-and-day-out. We trying our best to be mindful of that. It's partly why we try to stay in places for 2-4 weeks at a time, but still, it's a great reminder and point taken. I think relocating, even if it's within one's own country typically has some challenges. I do appreciate the heads up, as no doubt, it's easy to get enthralled with the magic of the moment. And while we are no doubt idealistic, we do try to keep our feet on the ground as well. We enjoy Lagos…


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Simcha and Carla,


Lagos looks delightful, I love the energy of the beach and ocean too.


What is in Lagos that will keep you challenged, occupied, and focused on new things to do, learn, and experience every day? What's the mental stimulation you enjoy that you want to fill your days with? Is it supported by being there? I wish that for you two.


JimR.

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Simcha
Simcha
Apr 05, 2023
Replying to

Hi Jim . . . you ask excellent questions and ones we've pondered as well. It's not really a cerebral town, which is no insult to the people here. We have met very bright people here from all over the world, and that alone is quite stimulating. However, there aren't really museums and that sort of stimulation . . . but the art scene here is quite nice. We are both big readers and I have found that so much of our mental exploration comes independent of the place we are living. The vibe here is more relaxing than challenging. Thank you Jim.

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