Em 2010:

. respeite a sinalização
. corte à direita



in retrospect this was a warm misty silky verging-on-fresh-dairy christmas day. i hope yours was just as good.



what invasive esses are these, three parasitical morphemes like bouts of lunacy, never ever at the right time?


Ring ring

estou sim? good afternoon sir am i speaking to mister [enter proper noun, +human, +male]? yes, [enter proper noun, +human, +male] speaking. sir i am calling from [enter brand name, +air-carrier, +trying-to-be-all-modern-fun-and-alternative] i apologise sir but your flight to [enter proper noun, -human, +attractive-city] on wednesday had to be cancelled and we will have to re-book you would you like to leave two days earlier or two days later? i... well, i... mm, in fact... would monday be suitable for you sir? well, i guess... if there's no... guess it'd have to be monday, i... i will book you on monday then sir thank you. i will send you an updated itinerary by email later today is that alright sir? well, i... thank you sir have a nice day sir and thank you for flying [enter brand name, +air-carrier, +trying-to-be-all-modern-fun-and-alternative].


Salomão says

o coração alegre é bom remédio, mas o espírito abatido faz secar os ossos.

a cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.

provérbs 17.22

nada a acrescentar. full stop.



vota oferenda. oferenda a presidente
oferenda pa sã bento, oferenda páutarquia
oferenda sempre, idade média nunca mais
isto sim é voto útil
oferenda pó tacho


Eurasian fish

say you're an istanbulu fish swimming free in the bosphorus nibbling on this in asia nibbling on that in europe discharging your offspring on both continents. make no mistake. cosmopolitanism won't shelter you from life as usual oh no sir-slash-madam.

as you nonchalantly make your way up the golden horn, you're likely to be caught by one those nonchalant fishermen on the bridge. and then you'll be displayed your freshness examined by callous hands your worth violated in loud haggling.

in a while you'll find yourself under some fragrant hamam steam. in a cooking pot. you're a fish - don't forget - and as destiny would have it fish often end up as someone's late afternoon meal. death as usual.



in the dark lurks a black deity and don't you forget. behind the metal wall before the metal war in gloomy garden sheds beneath every stiff petal of the compass rose. under the sand of the gobi and the sand of the negev throbbing in the clangor of coins ahead of every torch and in its wake between the closed pages of holy books there breeds a pustule of upcoming defeat. don't look so shocked. please please don't look so shocked. the inside of every living skull after all lies in permanent shade.


Enter at own risk

it's a best-seller and a life-changing monograph

in my oddest dreams.

in case you wish to join in the spiritual experience, to share the enlightenment, to pathfind across and away from the murky waters of ignorance, it can be acquired here.


When it rains, it pours

non-metaphorically, alright?............


Abode of snow

here, take a word - himalaya. this is a sigh one of those nostalgic ones surely you know the type. a memory so unspeakable it will probably remain unspoken till i learn to unspeak.


Three things that increase your heart rate



thai food


Home so soon?

não de coimbra a minha mas de viseu. anda lá perto.




Amsterdam opnieuw

just another turn of the wheel. among other things, i'k ben benieuwd how it'll feel to be a sublimated amsterdammer.


Temperature rising

it ain't the outside air
it ain't desire
it ain't a fever

could it be anticipation?


Little house on the prairie

by pop
ular demand, the humble macanese abode just after i we
nt on a cleaning spree. i can show you nothing
but the livi
ng room, the rest of the house was cover
ed in dry
ing sheets.


Macau é fixe!

- all together now -

macau é fixe!
macau é fixe!
macau é fixe!
macau - i can't
hear you - fixe!
macau é fixe!
macau é fixe!
macau - that's more
like it - fixe!
macau é fixe!


Home is...

... where you pay the rent.

(thus spake the man of wisdom)

so here's to hoping the glorious city of macau may suddenly turn into home. soon. the search continues.


The quest for the Holy Mahal

i'll say it up front: agra does not deserve the taj. but then again, who does? mumtaz herself would need to be an unrelenting saint to justify such a mausoleum, and yet i suspect her merits may have resided mostly in the generosity of her womanly curves. decayed agra cannot tolerate such youthful beauty and so, like a jealous stepmother, does its best to hinder your way to the taj mahal by concocting barrier after barrier along the road. a present-day version of hercules' labours, a modern arthurian quest. only the worthy shall succeed.
your travails start just before the train pulls at agra cantt. railway station - and end only after it speeds away from it - in the shape of a swarm of touts.
'need a clean hotel sir?'
'the taj crumbled to the ground yesterday, but my shop is a sight to behold'
'just come with me. don't ask any questions'
'your chapals are disintegrating sir i can fix them in a flash'
outside, in the warm sun, you meet with a barrage of rickshaw drivers, rickshaw pullers and nebulous rickshaw agents. but keep faith. in the distance, is that not the tip of the taj, your object of desire, glistening like a lotus flower in a pond of filth?

you persevere. enraged, the city digs under your every step a puddle of undisclosed liquid. think of pleasant things and splatter on. past the moat, however, the challenge intensifies. constant traffic buzzes by too close for comfort, and presently you are faced with a narrow tunnel under the train tracks. you must squeeze between the wheels and a freeze of merchants' stands, zigzag as best you can among walkers-by. you remember the vision of the cupola and step forward.

if you make it across the tunnel with your toes intact - a remarkable feat - you find yourself engulfed in a spasmodic crowd. the bazaar. street after street of tempting plastic wares and colourful fabrics and fragrant delicacies and an impenetrable human mass can easily throw you off track. relying on your best boyscout navigational techniques, you slowly proceed towards the invisible objective, and soon bump into a grand enclosure. the taj mahal, you realise with trepidation, is just behind it.
but don't let down guard. for you must still overcome the fearsome ticket office, guarded by an army of official (?) guides. you will be excused to think touching the ledge of the booth will seal your quest, but you're in for the most disheartening blow yet. 'welcome sir. the colour of your skin will push the fee up to eight hundred and fifty rupees, sir, the price of three hotel nights or nearly a week's worth of food.'

you scavange the sum as best you can and solemnly move on to the entrance. but mind you, if you happen to be carrying any dangerous objects, such as a terrifying camera cable, you will not be allowed in. you must think of a solution fast, no refund possible. leave your weapon of mass destruction at a nearby shop, along with a banknote or two, and try again. this time you make it through.
inside, you meet your old friend the crowd. you take a deep breath and plunge into the dark passageway.
and then you see it.

it is as magnificent as expected, and then some. and then some more. and some more. and it does sparkle. the holy mahal, the most inspired building on earth, stands on its marble plinth in poised mockery of your troubles. serenely transcending your imagination and millions of photographs.

take your time, that is a right you have earned the hard way. you gasp at the holy mahal the whole day. at sunset, though, the taj is ready to go to sleep. you gently bow good night and tiptoe away.



ao que parece o mostrengo não é inteiramente desprezível. daqui até junho é um saltinho.


Como disse?

cena: estou confortavelmente refastelado no meu café de eleição em khajuraho, com vista para as esculturas marotas (noutra altura explico), quando se senta na mesa da frente um senhor dos seus sessenta e muitos, cabelo completamente branco e um dos meus livros favoritos debaixo do braço. tem um ar simpático, o senhor, um ar de avô doce, e veste uma kurta branca que ainda por cima lhe dá todo o aspecto de um plácido padre da beira interior. uma presença benigna portanto, e tudo melhora quando se põe ao telefone

"listen, i was thinking about our plan for the ashram school. can we not start with the rotary funding we already have? it's quite urgent, you see. no? must we really wait for july then? what a shame."

é americano, bem posto na vida, e com um interesse desinteressado - imagino - na educação e progresso deste desafortunado país. ah, ainda há gente assim. chega-lhe entrementes a omelete que tinha pedido. assim que leva à boca a primeira garfada, explode em direcção ao empregado de mesa

"hey bhay, come here at once. have you not learnt to do your job properly? there is no salt and pepper on this table, what is this nonsense? what do i have to do to get some service here? you people are just so thoughtless."

o pároco beirão transforma-se diante dos meus olhos no estereótipo do colono britânico. ainda há gente assim?

isto criou-me um problema, uma dúvida de julgamento. será que estou certo (por instinto) em duvidar das primitivas intenções do benemérito apenas por aquele momento de vileza? poderá certamente ser um caso clássico de olha para o que eu digo não olhes para o que eu faço. ou será que podemos confiar na honestidade de quem nos diz "todos os seres humanos são meus irmãos excepto se forem pobres" ou "sou louco por velhinhos mas não posso com bebés" ou ainda "não suporto pretos mas os gatinhos siameses derretem-me o coração"? não sei se haverá quem seja capaz da bondade integral. é que não sei mesmo.


Half-light in Fatehpur Sikri

of all the ghost cities of india, fatehpur sikri is perhaps the ghostliest, so pristine one may expect to witness the ablutions of emperor akbar or a tansen raga at any moment, cross paths with stern black-clad jesuits at the next corner or notice a harem giggle from behind the latticed screens. the superb dream of the emperor, built to be an unparallelled moghul capital, the city sustained communal life for no more than fifteen years. for sudden want of water, they say. or did it live too much too fast? this was after all the site of some unbridled pleasure-seeking, some intense hanking and panking, the setting of the most celebrated of all ecumenical extravaganzas and the stage of the feistiest music.

these days fatehpur remains a magnificent fossil, an insect trapped in ambar, laden with palaces and courtyards worn and torn by the march of time rather than human steps. too grand to be a ruin, too much of a ruin to be fully grand. it appears more like a capital under construction, prettying up to receive its glittering patron. a half-city half-lived. here is a pictorial half-portrait in half-light.


Noite e dia noite in-dia

noite e dia e noite e o trânsito não sossega um segundo e dia e noite e dia e noite e dia e as buzinas estridentes e noite e dia e as paredes estremecem sob as rodas do camião e noite e dia e noite e os fumos de escape enroscam-se connosco na cama e dia e noite e dia por onde raios terão entrado estes mosquitos e noite e dia e noite in-dia é como dormir no separador da auto-estrada à entrada do aeroporto.


Into the dot dot dot

i'm off travelling eastwards a
gain. today's trip won't take me to any un
known spot. a
nd yet it feels unsettlingly peril
ously stimulatingly like a jump into a dark space.

make su
re to chec
k back for hot news every
and then.


Ainda se ao menos

o próximo passo fosse este, não seria necessário tanto esforço para o dar.


It's done!

já está!


Same here, Gandhiji

[outer wall of gandhi's house
sabarmati ashram



soothing is the limbo. sweet is the inability to apprehend. that second between sleep and life or between life and sleep, that extended yawn of the mind, all is a blur of light and light is the thing of happiness. mm let me be mmmm just let me be.