How living on the heavenly island changes my way of seeing things.

As I’m occupied with work for most of my days I haven’t noticed that the first month of my stay in Madeira winded up in stupendously swift speed. I’m impressed and a bit saddened. Nevertheless, this tells me to take more attention to my days and embrace all the surrounding. To… somehow… mystically suck in as much of the beauty of this place as it’s only possible.

Someone told me that people don’t change. Well, if it applies to majority I’d rather recognize myself as the one that excludes himself from this mainstream mass. And as I’m experiencing new every single day, I feel that my general attitude towards life has altered immensely. Below I reflect three things that Madeira ingrained in my head and, in my believed, changed my perception for good.

  1. Be the best version of yourself but at the same time allow yourself to have a day in baggy trousers.


I’m shirt + jeans type of man.

Before I came to Madeira I used to have my shirts ironed at the cleaners and I always wore the same elegantly looking cut jeans. Since wearing these type of cloths in Madeiran heat is an awful toil, I jumped into shorts and baggy sportswear. It’s a big transformation for me. And as I look in the mirror I see myself new and I’m feeling good about it. Of course whenever I attend an official party or need to go to capital city I wear cloths I used to put on everyday but I’m surely more of a liberated person in this matter. That’s why shorts became my best friends.


Picture taken by Justina Simonaitytė

  1. Don’t force yourself on physical activity, just live an active life (by that, I mean walk a lot).

I hate exercising. But since I’m here without a car I’ve got to walk on foot everywhere. I don’t mind walking but thanks to its hilly and bumpy roads Madeiran pedestrianly strides are almost trekking adventures. Imagine having these on a daily basis! It took me a while to get used to walking this much. Am I getting tired of it? – Not anymore. In fact, going out on pleasurable promenade stroll is unchangeably my favourite pastime activity.


Picture by Justina Simonaitytė

  1. Don’t control yourself on how much you eat. Eat as much you need to fuel.  But remember to choose good stuff.

I never skipped meals and in fact I never ate junk food. I’m one of those people that have as a habit to eat well varied and rather balanced meals. My father is a hunter and cooking is a big deal in my home. Not to mention the ultimate consumption. Everything linked to food is basically celebrated almost like at the Palace of Versailles in Louis XV’s times.

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Picture: Japanese plum; salmon with broccoli and couscous

As I find myself here all on my own I need to prepare meals by myself. I realized that the amount of snacks that I eat during a day next to bigger meals is unusual to what I’ve been used to. It’s of no surprise to me anymore. I exploit myself twice as much as I did before coming to Madeira and my body needs more fuel to run. The snacks that I choose are mostly fruits. Friends’ call me a banana man because I find Madeiran bananas most delicious. Next to this I like to have a sandwich with salmon or maturing ham. Preparing these at my place assure me I have more knowledge what I put into myself. Buying street food is a big mistake and people who does it often should restrain themselves on this habit.


Author: Dariusz Sirko


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