~whenever the lights are dimmed in a fado house~
I slept through the afternoon and would have carried on, but at some point I saw WhatsApp alerts on my mobile - Tiger sent me a video (I love when he does that) and Bane was also active.
Today, two people mentioned Fado to me - the artist in the Alfama gallery and the tuk-tuk driver Bruno. I swept off my dreaming charms and, upon Bruno's recommendation, I headed to the Fado museum to find some bars with live music that night.
The area was quiet when I arrived. Pubs were closed or had red lights on with only two customers sitting outside. No Fado, I thought. I was not expecting much and turned back home, planning to return at a different time closer to the weekend.
I was just passing different cafes as someone spoke to me from the bar entrance: "Hey it's a Fado night, wanna join?.."
I was neither sure nor stopping in the middle of the street "because a stranger is calling", so the easiest way was to say "no" and carry on, which I did. The night without Fado seemed too short though (besides, not worth throwing my sleeping story over board in vain) and something made me turn around and ask the young guy for a quick port wine. I was not planning to stay long.
The guy turned out to be a Fado singer, doing his job for 6 years, being filmed by an Austrian producer and loving Fado.
They gave me a gingjinha in that house, a seat at a table and a fabulous Fado experience.
Imagine this: lights turned down, a classic and a Portuguese guitar and a strong passionate voice, singing about life and death, love and jealousy, good and bad, happy and sad. It was all - the gypsy tunes mixed with romance, the Portuguese language, the atmosphere of red dimmed lights. It's a kick, a glimpse of passion.
The singer translated some bits of the song to me, for example I loved the phrase "we compare a woman to a guitar. Anyone can touch it, but not everyone can make her happy "... that is true in deed.
The bar owner stood closer to the players and all of a sudden, he turned into a Fado singer, and God, he sang. What a voice! More experience than the younger singer David - both in singing Fado and in living the life. This is what was truly rewarding - the elder stronger singer and the atmosphere of Fado that night.
Ginjinha (=ginja) burnt strong into my throat and put fire to my body. At no point of this article or that night, my impressions can be even slightly considered to be exhagurated by the alcohol. If you ever heard passionate Fado, you'd believe me.
I spoke to David about women Fadistas. He promised to take me to a different Fado bar for another Fado experience. Again, I was not sure but something told me to join him. On our way he asked me all the interesting things you'd ask if you'd be planning to date - kids? Married? Seeing anyone?
Something made me say I was seeing Tiger (well hell yes I was seeing Tiger). And it was easy to say it to David so I did.
We arrived at a different bar; this time it was a female singer Jessica and she treated us well. David was going to pay for the food but she put it on the house. Americans were in the pub too, some couples were holding hands which I liked to observe.
David, whilst sitting at the table, suddenly said "At the end of the night, can we make love?"
Okay... hold on for a second. *confused*
I did not feel top that evening, wearing warm clothes, no make up and an ordinary warm hat, a girl could imagine that I was not looking or feeling sexiest ever that night. It was a good sign that I could still attract a male, even if such an alfonse like David. Hm, considering life is just a chance and we would not see each other again, it was the first time offer of this kind and I considered it openly as an option thrown to me by the challenging universe, for a second. I asked myself truly, would I want to do it, would I do it?
"No" I replied.
He continued "I am open and I like you, you *bla bla bla*" whatever he said about treating me or free entertainment & food at his expense (why even he claimed Jessica's present, stays a secret to me) or me being a queen to him, it was empty words and I saw him differently. It was, again, a first ever straight into my head offer like that. It was eye-opening and I was pleased that I could stand my grounds, not feel threatened or upset that it was not "true love". We directly and openly shared more thoughts about the whole situation and I decided to leave. He was boring me, not giving up attempts or hope, and I felt tired to repeatedly say "thanks but no thanks". Whatever that night could have turned into, it was going to be slightly unpleasant to me. I felt adult, likeable and able to choose and I chose to leave. He was playing a victim card, but I did not buy it. I left money with Jessica and she was openly laughing and hugging me good bye. I felt female solidarity at that point.
Fado was great to experience and listen to. I like the melancholic Fado more than the cheerful one.
Oh you Fado, born in Lisbon, people like me admire and shazam you secretly to use the sounds in their footage, thank you for being there in Portugal and in the world - for me and the whole humankind. God, thank you for tonight, an unforgettable experience that gave me energy and inspiration to write.
David, you are great but better stay "married" and faithful to Fado.