photo 1 (12)One of the last things Sister and I did while in Lisbon was see the one thing I wanted to see more than any other. I mentioned that while warm, it was overcast so we left this for our last day there when the sun was shining and the tiles glinting. This place, the Carmo Convent, was stunning. Earthquakes, fires, abandoned refurbishment attempts have all left Carmo Convent looking a homage to Romantic Gothicism.

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There was one thing Sister and I wanted to do more than anything while we were in Japan and that was to have dinner with a Geiko, a trained entertainer. Not only were we able to have dinner with a Geiko (now retired) we were also able to have dinner with a Meiko, an apprentice Geiko. The whole event was organised by Gion Hatanaka, a Ryokan in Kyoto and while it is pricey (roughly £100 per person) it is something sister and I will never do again – an experience of a lifetime, an insight into a culture very different from our own. The price includes all food and alcohol plus impeccable service.

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