Rua Augusta, in the Baixa district, Lisbon

The D&O Diary is on assignment in Europe, with a first stop in the beautiful Portuguese city of Lisbon (known to the locals as Lisboa). Travel can take you lots of places, but if you are really fortunate, travel will take you to Lisbon, one of the world’s great places and one of The D&O Diary’s all-time favorite destinations.

The primary purpose of my visit to Lisbon was to participate as a speaker at Liberty Mutual’s annual Flex Institute, for some of its professional liability insurance associates from around the world. It was so great to be able to be a part of this event again this year. I would like to think Michael Beradino, James Areago, and all of their colleagues for making me a part of their sessions. I would also like to thank Caroline Ridge for helping me in planning and preparing for this event. It was also great just having a chance to meet all of the Liberty Mutual professionals from Europe, Latin America, North America, Asia, Australia, and Bermuda.

The FLEX Institute team, from left to right, James Areago; Jorge Chao; Carolina Carmona; me; Michael Beradino; Caroline Ridge; Emma Pierce; Jennifer Okezie-Watts; and Tom Leahy.
Here is a picture of the Asia Pacific region Institute attendees, from left to right: Adriana Petrie; Jane Hattwich; me; Louise Tong; Cennan Nwiran; Todd Woodward.
In this picture, I am with the Institute’s Bermuda attendee, Tia Smith
Here’s the Canadian team: Harvinder Sharma; Conor Paterson; me; Yani Guzman; and Zach Garcia.
This year’s event included a number of Claims representatives. From left to right: Kristin McMahon; Arlene Levitin; Ashley Grater; me; Alejandro Guevara; Sai Compton; Irene Stavrou; Lauren Holt; Nik Mahida; and Zach Garcia.
Here’s a picture with the European representatives, from left to right: Jens Eschweiller; Jorge Chao; Laurence Dodet; Alicia Cortel; Phillip Hornstein.

Here’s the Latin America team (some of whom are based in the U.S.), from left to right: Nicolle Marsell; Carolina Carmona; me; Eliana Medina; Alejandro Guevara; and Rachel Miccolis.

Here’s the large contingent of attendees from the United Kingdom, from left to right: Shannon O’Sullivan; Nik Mahida; Irene Stavrou; Emma Pierce; Lauren Holt; me; Kiran Shetty; Natasha Shoult; Sai Compton; Chris Pick; and Jack Kelly.
Here are the Institute attendees from the United States: Jacqueline Patterson; Tiago Dos Santos; me; Janine Cooper; and Erin Sherman.

I was only in Lisbon for a short time on this visit, but fortunately my schedule did afford me the opportunity to enjoy seeing many of this beautiful city’s features.

The beautiful Praça do Comércio, facing the River Tejo, in the center of the city’s historic district.
Lisbon is a hilly city and the hilltops afford great view across the city. Here’s a view of the famous Alfama district, taken from the Miradouro de Santa Luiza.
A street-level view inside the atmospheric Alfama district.
Another street level view in the Alfama district, with a glimpse of the Tejo in the background.
A true Lisbon breakfast, a Pastel de Nata (a Portuguese egg custard tart) and Uma Bica.
On the pedestrian walkway along Lisbon’s beautiful boulevard, the Avenida da Liberdade, one of the Europe’s great streets, along with the Champs-Élysées in Paris, Unter den Linden in Berlin, the Royal Mile in Edinburgh, and Andrássy út in Budapest.
With the famous statute of Fernando Pessoa, in the city’s Chiado district. Pessoa is one of the greatest writers of the 20th century; his possibly autobiographic novel The Book of Disquiet, though a challenging reads, is one of my favorite books of all time.
I was fortunate to be visiting Lisbon during the Festos dos Santos Populares, and in particular during the Festas de Santo António. The city was decorated for the festival and on the feast day itself, there were parades throughout the city. All of the city squares were full of tables, food carts, and drinks booths. This picture was taken in the Miradouro de S. Pedro de Alcântara, which has great views of the Castelo de São Jorge.

The street food available at the festival was great. One of the things I enjoyed was a bifana, which is a bread roll stuffed with pork cooked in a marinade of wine, garlic, onions, and spices. Absolutely delicious.
Here’s a street view of the famous stairs in the Bairo Alto district looking back to the Castelo. Lisbon is such a beautiful city. It was great to be back again, too bad the visit was so short. I think I could walk its streets endlessly and never tire of the place. Truly one of Europe’s great cities to visit.