All posts tagged: memories

My Portuguese Inscriptions: Sintra’s Royalty Retreat

Royal summer places, fairytale castles, and gardens made for romance. This is Sintra, Portugal. Mostly unheard of by travelers. During our stay in Lisbon, we decided to take a day trip to the compelling town of Sintra. In the majesty of this Shakespearean-like town, we were surrounded with romantic Portuguese architecture while making our way through ruins quilted in moss. The air of history and mystery echoed around us. Moreover, what makes it’s history fascinating is that it was purely a retreat for Portuguese royalty in the past! Nestled on top of Sintra Hills is the extravagant Palacio De Pena (Pena Palace). We had our fair share of ascending Portugal’s steep hills, so this time we decided to board a bus to take us to the hill on which one of Sintra’s dreamlike castles is perched. I have sort of an obsession with castles. Maybe it has to do with being a symbol of the Middle Ages, a period of history for which I have a deep fascination. Perhaps it’s the romantic and fairy-tale aspect and …

A Ukrainian Childhood and Fond Memories

Every summer I traveled to my second hometown, Donetsk, to see my grandparents with my mother. Looking back at my memories as a child in Ukraine fills my heart with bittersweet nostalgia. A lot of things in my life trigger my memories of Ukraine. One of the simplest things, like to catch a faint whiff of dill, instantaneously evokes in me a vivid recollection of my grandparent’s house, it was like a gateway to the past, a flashback to my great and active and childhood that I feel so blessed to have had. Summer was always accompanied by scraped knees and purple-stained fingers. Our neighborhood had a huge infamous Mulberry tree right in the middle of it that stained the ground with purple spots, and reaching out to the highest branches (with the tastiest and most ripe berries) was always risky because they left indelible stains on my clothes! Being sort of a jungle kid I encountered many risks. I lived and spent a large portion of my childhood time outdoors; climbing trees, building tree houses out …