I'm thinking these anti-free-market-thoughts as I gaze through the 16th story window of my room in the Dom Pedro Hotel in Lisbon (check prices). Down below, cars silently slosh through the evening drizzle. I have a proper glass of port in my hand. The room is bathed in the soft glow of low lights, and the furnishings make me feel welcome--as if I'd just moved into a new house in which I wouldn't change a thing. The Dom Pedro is a five star luxury hotel located in the heart of Lisbon's prime shopping district. I could get used to staying here, and I do need to buy a new wallet...
Why am I mentioning this? Because I have a sneaking suspicion that folks are making themselves go blind by staring at Internet sites, looking for the cheapest travel option all the time. Because maybe we owe ourselves some luxury every once in a while. Because some of my fondest memories of Europe have occured when I've splurged--the bottle of Champagne ordered from room service while I lounged on the bed, gazing tenderly at the at the lighted Greek temples in Sicily's Agrigento for example.
Splurge. It's a good word. Maybe even footloose travelers use it too infrequently.
Related Travel: Portugal Map and Travel Essentials