Wow, this is so long overdue. As in, nearly a year overdue. I had a draft written but never finished it up. I am not as great at posting travel as I used to be. The reason I went to Portugal is for CISV. It was the Regional Training Forum (RTF) for Europe South! From March 26-March 31, over a hundred learners gathered from about 22 countries. We had FIVE trainings going on including Interchange, Seminar, Step Up, Train the Trainer (TTT), and Village.
Because I’m part of the International Village Committee (IVC), TTT trained, and had availability for that week, I got to go to Portugal. Hitting that trifecta is difficult which is why there weren’t two Village trainers from Europe. My fellow trainer is from Egypt. That made creating the training challenging with the 9 hour time zone. But, we prevailed and were able to plan ahead.
Our trainees ranged from staff to planners to a JC. We had the spectrum of participants, ages, and countries. As Village has a strong emphasis on the content area of diversity, this group was quite fitting. It was one of the most interesting CISV experiences I’ve had as an adult. A year later, I still have favorable memories of the good times we had.
After the training, I had just under a day to explore Lisbon. I did what I could. Oh, and I accidentally walked the city in the completely wrong direction. I did that in Vancouver too (twice!). It was mainly because I know absolutely zero city-navigation Portuguese. I can say good morning and good night along with various phrases all day long, but not so much with the signs I saw in the city. When I finally met up with my friend and host for the night, we went to a small gathering and hung out. Since I had stayed up the night before until the crack of dawn and walked around Lisbon all day, I was so tired I could barely put sentences together. The funny thing was, in Portugal, they stay up really late at night. I probably got 4 hours of sleep before my taxi arrived the next day. Zero sleep on top of 6 hours of jet lag on top of travel problems on top of language barriers makes for a fun and exciting trip.
I had a interesting time with traveling this time around. My travel troubles…
- Plane leaves late from Detroit to Paris
- Sprinting through Charles de Gaule to make it to next flight including a ticket check, passport control, and security.
- Not being able to get money from my debit card at an ATM.
- Air France losing my flight reservation from Paris to Atlanta
Thankfully I made it on time to the training and home on the flight I had booked originally! Travel schedules can get messed up but you just have to go with the flow. It probably helped that I was so tired I couldn’t expend enough energy to care.
I took a bunch of photos of my time in the city and at the training (about an hour outside of the city). Take a look if you have time.
Check out all my photos from the trip (click here)