– Portugal scores big points with me for the sheer number of dogs it has. So many people have dogs, and so many dogs just hang around on their own, walking the streets, laying on the sidewalk, and no one minds. Portugal wins.
– Why would anyone drive in that country?
Okay, in Lisbon especially. The streets are sometimes too narrow to even turn the corner on the first try, you have to park on the sidewalk to make room for other cars, and according to my Lonely Planet Portugal has the highest number of traffic accidents in Europe. I’d say you should take the bus, but even then I cling to the overhead bar, praying the driver doesn’t rear end a gravel truck, or hit a tree, or clip a pedestrian.
– I felt like a total jerk for having learned zero Portuguese before I went, even though we always met people that could speak English and didn’t have any problems. Really though, could I have just learned numbers and maybe some basic questions? I learned, on our second day there, to say Obrigada (thank-you), and it’s the only thing I used the whole time. In my defense, Portuguese sounds are hard. Spanish is easier.
– The buskers you are most likely to see on the streets of Lisbon are cute accordian-playing boys. (This one is for Anika)