Diary in Google Translate Retrospect 1994 Portugal (2) Porto

The first stop I visited on my Portugal tour was Porto, a port city in northern Portugal, the second largest city after Lisbon.


Porto is a beautiful city with many hills on the northern bank of the Douro River, which flows through northern Portugal, and is also known as a port wine producer. 

The so-called port wine is a specialty fortified wine that is shipped from Porto Port, and is classified as a sweet fruit liquor according to the Japanese Sake Tax Law. 

Port wine, which is widely known in Japan, is a sweet fruit liquor released in 1907 by a Western-style liquor maker in Western Japan, and is currently sold at around 550㎖ for around 700-1000 yen.


By the way, the day after arriving in Porto was devoted to the winery tour, the small bus we took on tour was laid down in a large wine factory, and from there we were guided by winery staff to observe the manufacturing process, The enormous size of the equipment was just amazing. 

And after receiving the staff's explanation, I learned for the first time that port wine was not a cheap fruit wine, but a luxury and expensive wine that was once favored by the former royal family to modern wealthy. 

After the factory tour, the testing I was looking for was expensive red wine with a color reminiscent of jewelry ruby, so only a small glass was offered, but it was truly beautiful.



 Porto landscape



The wineries we visited 











Diary in Google Translate Retrospect 1994 Portugal (1) 11 days trip

My old passport is stamped with [14-05-94 PORTO] [21-05-94 LISBOR]. 

Yes, I participated in an 11-day excursion to Portugal, including a one-night overnight flight from Porto on May 14, 1994 and leaving Lisbon on May 21.


At that time, as a company employee, I did not expect to be able to travel abroad this long except during the holiday season. 

However, this was made possible by the company I worked for introduced a generous system of "two consecutive weeks of vacation." 

Unfortunately, none of my friends working at the company could take such a long vacation, and I decided to give up my personal trip with a friend and go on a tour package hosted by a travel agency for the first time .


The participants who met for the first time in the airport departure lobby were 12 people, including five retired couples, women in their twenties, and me. 

Looking at the members, I realized that such a long journey was a high hurdle for active company employees.


From now on, a relaxed schedule, with chartered small buses from Porto to Lisbon and all nights staying at least 2 nights, was a major factor in this trip.




私の古いパスポートには〔14-05-94 PORTO〕〔21-05-94 LISBOR〕のスタンプが押されている。 



















Diary in Google Translate Retrospect 1992 Paris(6) Seine River Cruise

Each city has a river that can be called a symbol. And walking around the riverside is essential to thoroughly enjoy the city, but cruising the river has a different taste.


Sumida River is the river for me living in Tokyo. The most impressive thing about the Sumida River cruising was the summer evening dinner party held by the department where I worked about 40 years ago. 

It was a two-hour round-trip course that chartered a boat with tatami mats full of Edo atmosphere at a camp in Asakusa, downtown Tokyo.


On the way out, watching the sunset on the riverbank, we had a lively chat, enjoying tempura, sushi, sashimi, beer, and sake. 

The return trip is a karaoke tournament with all participants. Each one sang loudly in a good mood with the clapping of  colleagues on the back.


By the way, the Seine river is the symbol of Paris. On a sunny afternoon, my friend and I embarked from the deck of a one-hour tour boat that made a round trip around the Cite and Saint Louis islands from the dock near the Eiffel Tower.


First, take a close look at the Eiffel Tower at the starting point, then the Les Invalides, the Musée d'Orsay, Notre Dame Cathedral, the Paris City Hall, the concierge with Marie Antoinette imprisoned, the Louvre, the Place de la Concorde, Grand Palais and Chaillot The palace, one after another, appeared attractive sightseeing spots, so it was just spectacular. 

In just one hour, a rich cruise with so many highlights is rare in the world.



 (The picture is a pleasure boat on the Sumida River)














Diary in Google Translate Retrospect 1992 Paris(5) Chanson Bar

Speaking of chansons, the first thing that comes to mind is Yves Montand, a male singer who is the Parisian itself, and Edith Piaf, a woman with rich emotional expression.


But my favorite was Charles Aznavour, who sings the bitterness of life, such as "Hier encore" and "La bohême". 

Yes, Japanese love Charles Aznavour. He himself responded to Japanese fans on  September 17 in Tokyo and September 19 in Osaka  just before he died at the age of 94 on October 1, 2018.


And the chanson singer who gained popularity in Japan around 1992 when I visited Paris was both from Greece. 

The female singer was Nana Musxuri with a transparent voice, and the male singer was Georges Moustaki, whose "Ma solitude" hit. 

In particular, I was fascinated by the mood of a lonely philosopher of Mustaq who sings to speak.


With that in mind, we stepped into the old chanson bar found in our guidebook to enjoy authentic chansons on this occasion. 

The bar is an age-old building that appears in the scene of an old movie, "Sous les toits de Paris," with dark and timeless interiors and mostly mature Men and women.


27 years later, I can't remember exactly what kind of instrumentation and what song I listened to at that bar, but maybe "Hymne à l'amour", "La mer", etc. Was played?




シャンソンといえば先ず思いつくのは、男性歌手ではパリジャンそのものといえるイヴ・モンタン(Yves Montand)で、女性では感情表現が豊かなエディット・ピアフである。


しかし私の好きなのは、「帰りこぬ青春(Hier encore)」「ラ・ボェーム(La bohême)」など人生の苦みを切々と歌うシャルル・アズナヴール(Charles Aznavour)だった。

そう、日本人はシャルル・アズナヴール(Charles Aznavour)が大好きなのだ。そして、彼自身2018年10月1日に94歳で没する直前の9月17日の東京公演、19日の大阪公演で日本のファンに応えている。



女性歌手は透明な声のナナ・ムスクーリ(ˈnana ˈmusxuri])、そして男性歌手は「私の孤独(Ma solitude)」がヒットしたジョルジュ・ムスタキ(Georges Moustaki)だった。 




そのバーはいかにも古い映画「パリの屋根の下(Sous les toits de Paris)」のシーンに出てくるような時代を経た建物で、部屋の中は薄暗くて時代がかっており、お客の大半は中高年の男女だった。


あれから27年を経て、あのバーでどんな楽器編成で、どんな歌を聴いたのかはっきり思い出せないが、多分「愛の賛歌(Hymne à l'amour)」、「ラ・メール(La mer)」などは演奏されたのではないか。

Diary in Google Translate Retrospect 1992 Paris(4) La Coupole

An American style bar, a beer hall in the back, a variety of national languages ​​flutter, interiors, customers and bartenders all blend together to create a world, and noblemen, businessmen, bohemian painters etc. are like friends without introducing each other. They call on the oldest bartender, "Hey, Bob" to confirm that they are part of this world. 

Germans, Norwegians, Americans, they speak at least three languages. 

While there are groups that dress up luxuriously and talk loudly and replace the aperitif that costs 10 francs a number of times, while dressing as hard as possible and trying to push themselves into the glitter here are just for that There are groups coming from all over the world, who sip an aperitif a few francs a cup.


In that hustle and bustle, there is a young red-haired Czech immigrant at the counter at the back of the bar, perhaps scooping a single spoonful of yogurt, the only meal of the day, from morning to night. The man's name is Radick, and no one approaches him.


The above is a scene from La Coupole, written by Georges Simnon in the Maigret Police Series "La Tete dun homme".


I've always been fascinated by this scene and on this occasion, with my friends, went to Montparnasse and stood in front of the La Coupole store. 

I wanted to empathize with the Czech immigrant Radick in that situation and take his place. Why did he have to challenge a prominent Maigret police and commit a crime in order to satisfy his desire for approval? 

However, the inside of the store, which was visible through the glass window, was dim and seemed difficult to access, so I decided to leave after a while hesitating.


Later, we strolled around the unexpectedly Americanized neighborhood of Montparnasse and sat down in a bright café where young people were enjoying conversation. 

And I was interested in the difference between Saint-Germain-des-Prés, both of which are on the left bank of the Seine but still maintaining Paris, and Montparnasse, which was Americanized.


However, a quarter of a century later, I regret why I did not enter La Coupole at that time. I just had to push the door open. 

The novel has the impact of placing the reader in the scene and wanting to remember the emotions of the characters.










上記はジョルジュ・シムノンメグレ警視シリーズ「男の首(日本語タイトル)」(La Tete dun homme))で描いた「ラ・クーポール」( La Coupole)の一場面である。


かねてからこの場面に惹かれていた私はこの機会にと友人と共に、モンパルナス(Montparnasse)まで足を運び、「ラ・クーポール」( La Coupole)の店の前に立った。 









Diary in Google Translate Retrospect 1992 Paris(3) LES DEUX MAGOTS

Saint-Germain-des-Pres on the left bank of the Seine was once a base for leftist activists and cultural figures. 

Among them, LES DEUX MAGOTS, a café, was a place where existentialists, mainly Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir, gathered for a hot discussion. The legend as a place was handed down.


Longing for such a legend and the cafe culture that was not yet seen in Tokyo at the time, my friends and I looked around the surroundings with curiosity at the terrace seat of LES DEUX MAGOTS last year and this time. 

And what has come to light is that LES DEUX MAGOTS is not just a place for people to have hot discussions, but a place for people to drop in, exchange greetings, exchange light hugs, and exchange light conversations.  

To add, I thought it was just a tourist spot where people from all over the world, like ours, were drawn to the legend.





その中でもカフェ、ドゥ マゴ(LES DEUX MAGOTS)はジャン=ポール・サルトル(Jean-Paul  Sartre)やシモーヌ・ド・ボーヴォワール (Simone de Beauvoir)を中心とした実存主義者が集って熱い議論を交わした場所としての伝説が語り継がれていた。


そんな伝説と、当時の東京ではまだ見られなかったカフェ文化に憧れて、友人と私は前年と今回、ドゥ マゴ(LES DEUX MAGOTS )のテラス席で好奇心に満ちて周囲を見廻した。 

そして見えてきたのは、既にドゥ マゴ(LES DEUX MAGOTS )は人々が熱い議論を交わす場所ではなく、人々が立ち寄り、挨拶を交わし、軽い抱擁を交わし、軽い会話を交わす場所にすぎない事が。 


Diary in Google Translate Retrospect 1992 Paris(2) Rive Gauche

Rive Gauche on the left bank of the River Seine in Paris, and Rive Gauche for me at that time, meant the Perfume of Saint-Laurent, and I commuted with the cheapest product.


And on this trip, my friend and I walked to the heart of Rive Gauche's iconic student quarter, Quartier latin, where the Paris uprising took place in May 1968. 

A quarter of a century after the May uprising of Paris in 1968, which is still a legend, the heat of that time had disappeared, but there was an academic atmosphere from the college buildings, shopping streets, and cobblestones that show the history and tradition.


I thought Quartier latin was a good place to walk with thoughts at one time and talk with friends at other times.






そして、今回の旅で私と友人はリヴ・ゴーシュを象徴する、1968年5月のパリ蜂起の舞台となった学生街のカルチェ・ラタン(Quartier latin)を心ゆくまで歩き回った。 



私は、カルチェ・ラタン(Quartier latin)は、ある時は一人で考えながら歩き、他の時には友人と語り合いながら歩くにふさわしい街だと思った。