We made the Portuguese press!

The Portuguese dream that attracts the Americans. Visão magazine.

Visão is considered to be the Portuguese Time magazine. They say that it is the most read news magazine in the country. I was lucky enough to be chosen as part of an article on ex-pat Americans living in Portugal. This month’s cover story is titled, The Portuguese dream that attracts the Americans. The sub heading is The stories of those who have left the American dream behind to move to Portugal because of the quality of life, property investments, the wines and to escape Trump. Resident permits for US citizens have almost doubled, and golden visas have multiplied six times.

I have translated the article and share it with you here.

Joe and Lisa Graziano in front of Clérigos Tower in Porto.

Lisa Graziano, wine specialist, and teacher. From Denver.
Before moving to Porto, Lisa Graziano thought about moving to Valencia, Spain. However, when she visited Portugal, she discovered that the country had a more stable government, friendlier people, and a lower cost of living. Besides this, the North American had for years had a passion for Portuguese wines. In the Invicta (Porto), she learned a new way of being. “We were used to doing everything right now, but now we have learned to be calm.” (To live more calmly.)

The attraction of the Douro.
“The USA is a bagunça,” (mess) says Lisa Graziano, mixing English and Portuguese in the eagerness of justifying the move to Portugal. “The election of Trump was terrible. If people thought it was a good idea this man should be president, I had to go”. The only thing left was to decide where to go. Years earlier, she had come across Portugal at a wine tasting in Denver, the capital of Colorado, where she lived for more than two decades. She worked in a wine shop and was used to trying the best vintages. But she was impressed by the quality of the national wines (Portuguese), especially the whites.


“One of the reasons for leaving Denver was the extreme heat that was becoming more and more common. “This is why we decided to live in Porto because it is cooler,” she says happily. The family, and their dog, moved to the Invicta (The unconquered, Porto is known as the unconquered city, a cidade invicta.) two years ago. But it was during the pandemic that they purchased a T3 (three-bedroom) apartment in Cedofeita. (A neighborhood in central Porto.) Lisa gives lessons in English to Italians online, and her husband is a graphic designer for a company in the US.

The North American feels very much that “the United States is not a country for older people.” To start with, “the health system is a joke,” she says. “We are close to retirement age, and we have access to the national health system that costs a small fraction of the cost in the US and has much better quality. That is important to us,” she admits. Besides social protection, safety has been surrendered in the country. “The US is no longer a safe place. There is always a shooting du jour, and we did not feel safe,” she laments. “Those who live in the US think that everything is better there, but that is a lie. It is a good illusion when you cannot leave, but here (in Portugal), everything is much better,” she believes.


Lisa would like to become a type of ambassador for Portuguese wines, and for this reason, she is writing a book. She has the objective of visiting all of the wine regions in the country. The Douro was the first region that she got to know, “one of the most beautiful in the world.”
Also, the adventures told in the blog The Road to Portugal, about the move to and life here in Portugal will be published.
What’s more, that digital showcase has already given origin to various contacts from north Americans asking for more information about the country.

Although now, “there is an adult as president,” the couple does not plan to return to the USA.” For this reason, the response to the question about how long do you think you will live in Portugal is unequivocal, “Forever.”

And it’s back. With a vengeance.

Covid rides again, virulent, bolder, and faster than before.
Here in Portugal, the new lockdown has people pissed off. There have been some protests in Lisbon, but happily, all have been peaceful.

Padrão dos Descobrimentos monument in Lisbon. Celebrating the Age of Discovery in Portugal.

And, the government is pissed as well. People have been becoming lax about the rules, and those in charge have taken notice. So, you really can’t blame the powers that be for instituting more stringent rules and penalties for noncompliance.
When the new lockdown went into effect, we noticed folks hanging out outside some cafés on our way to the grocery store. I have also seen a lot of people out and about maskless lately.
I get it, everyone is suffering from lockdown fatigue. There was an image on IG in Portuguese that summed it up, be patient, or be a patient! A good reason to mind the basic rules: wear a mask, practice social distancing, and wash your hands!

And, to some extent, it is our own damn fault. Had to get together and go places for the holidays. This was abusing the privilege of being stupid. And here we are.
Not only has the vaccine rollout been fraught with problems, but now people are refusing to be vaccinated. People are afraid of something developed so quickly for something we don’t even know that much about.
The pandemic problems seem endless. We can only hope that the world will get it together sooner rather than later.

Listen to the man people! This is a public service announcement!

At least, we are here, in Portugal. Not only do you have the pandemic, but the disintegration of democracy before our eyes in the US.
Never have we seen the level of stupidity that we are witnessing. Between the political madness and the lack of common sense regarding fighting the virus, it is staggering. Idiocracy is happening! When I first saw the movie, I thought it was funny and a little absurd. Now it is a horror movie depicting where the US is headed. Unbelievable, but true.

Veiw from the roof of the Capitol in Denver, Co. The US has certainly seen better days!

Again, we are thankful to have left the states. However, it is still horrifying to watch. It certainly feels safer regarding events from afar. The old world seems ever so much more civilized these days.

And now this.

We interrupt this usually informative and fun-loving blog for a rant post.

Sack Man Whiskey and Asura Malt Liquor from Yria, Spain. Will somebody please sack this guy?!

Holy mother of insanity. You can’t make this stuff up. It pushes the bounds of credibility. A delusional narcissist, hate monger becomes pres of the US and very nearly overthrows the government as we know it.

Here’s the thing, the decline of the empire has been happening for a long time.

Even before the dump show, most of the systems in the country were showing signs of malfunction. And that is putting it mildly. Health insurance is a prohibitively expensive joke. Health providers, oblivious drug peddlers. Insurance, in general, a scam. The legal system, the absurdly random application of the “law.” And people get away with murder every day. The food supply has become so adulterated that it has lost nutritional value and flavor. Even if people woke up enough to take action, it is unlikely that there could be a noticeable improvement in my lifetime.

We survived the holidays that weren’t, in the year that wasn’t due to the pandemic, only to witness hoodlums storming the US capitol while being egged on by a president who is unfit for office. And he has pulled off his chicanery for years without penalty. The country has become a brainless, spineless laughing stock the world over.
When I was growing up, we considered the US to be the greatest country in the world. The T-word vowed to make America great again. Instead, he made it his dump-land of hate, greed, and stupidity. From a first world country to a third world mess in four years. Pretty impressive for someone as mentally unstable as he.

A timely vodka from Colorado.

It is sad when the people in power are only concerned with grabbing power instead of being the public servants that they should be.
Biden and company certainly have their work cut out for them. Best of luck to them. They will need it.

As for us, thank God we got out when we did.
And now, back to our regularly scheduled programming. How about a glass of wine? Or, maybe something stronger. Good old American whiskey seems fitting. Make that 100 proof.

May we suggest Lock Stock & Barrel 13 year old straight rye whiskey.