It’s a long way to Lisbon from Southern California so it’s no wonder Jerry (not his real name) was out of sorts when he and his family arrived for ten days at Casa Joaquina.
In his weakened state, Jerry didn’t know what to make of the Portuguese man gesticulating and remonstrating from the doorway until he recognized his computer in the man’s hand and the man himself as the taxi driver who had dropped them off twenty minutes earlier.
Jerry had left the computer in the back seat. The driver hadn’t noticed either until he picked up two young men who very quickly—inexplicably—asked him to stop and hopped out carrying a laptop they hadn’t had when they’d entered. “Wait a minute, that’s not yours!” the driver said, and wrested it away. Then he’d made his way back to Casa Joaquina—an heroic effort in its own right, given the labyrinth of one-way streets and unavailability of parking—in order to bestow upon Jerry the computer he had yet to miss.
“Nem toda a gente é má,” (Not everyone is bad) the driver said in explanation of his benevolence. Not every Portuguese taxi driver is so gallant either, to be sure, as a number of our overcharged guests will attest, so it pays to make sure the meter is running, but kindnesses like these should not go unheralded.