At the end of August/beginning of September I went on a week vaycay with my beautiful Mother to the pretty, hilly island south of Portugal mainland, called Madeira.
I absolutely hate flying. I hate planes. So, after I went through all those shenanigans, we travelled to our hotel, Dorisol Buganvília Hotel, based in the heart of Funchal.
The hotel was nice, WiFi in the lobby (and in our room on 5th floor when it wanted to work), the staff were nice too and helpful- on my TripAdvisor shiii…
We went half-board so we ate breakfast at the hotel most mornings, but that was DEAD, (unseasoned scrambled egg, plastic sausages and bacon dipped in oil) apart from that, the food was exquisite, everywhere else.
We arrived in the morning, so we had the whole day ahead of us. We asked how to get to the beach because the travel-agent had told us that it was a 5-7-minute walk. Wrong.
The closest real beach (real meaning a beach with sand and all) was a 15-minute taxi journey away, the closest sea to us was a 10-minute walk and had no sand, just concrete with sun-beds and beach umbrellas- NO sand.
Annoying. However, everything else in the area was beautiful albeit quite hilly, I felt as if I had done leg day every time I went out.
Funchal was a pretty, scenic place.
During our week stay my Mum and I went on a few excursions. We visited CR7, Cristiano Ronaldo’s museum, based in Funchal’s town centre. Don’t get it twisted, I know nothing about football but it was still fun to visit.
The interior was 10/10.
This was fun too, not worth the money at all, but fun. I’m not sure why I persuaded my Mum to go on this excursion because I couldn’t care less about how volcanoes formed . But, it was a fun day out, we got to walk inside the volcanos too and watch a 3D volcano formation movie…
We took a day trip to another island, we travelled 2.5 hours via ferry. It was on that boat journey I learnt that I am sea sick as well as air sick. Perfect.
The island of Porto Santo was beautiful, again, loads of hills but we took a tour of the island by coach so that was all good- not that I learnt much during the tour as I slept for the most part of it, but I’m sure it was very informative.
We went on this excursion because we didn’t have access to a beach WITH sand close-by, the Porto Santo beach was beautiful as you can see below (and above), the selfie opportunities were fabulous too- as seen on my Instagram.
We visited a small beach in Machico, south of Madeira too.
Now, lets get into the nitty gritty…
Aside from its variety of fresh seafood and pretty views, Funchal was/is a very racist place, in my opinion.
I’ve endured my fair share of racist restaurant waiters/waitresses in London and Leicester, but this was on a different level.
My Mum and I were the only coloured people on the island, well it felt that way. The only time we seen any POC was when we were on the transfer coach to the airport, leaving the island.
Let me tell you about some of the experiences my Mother and I went through…
The first one happened the day we arrived, at the first restaurant we ate at. At this restaurant were a white couple and my Mum and I. Now, mannerisms are bound to be different in different countries, so when the waitress had given us our menus before we sat down she shortly came over and asked us in an abrupt manner, “do you know what you want yet?” I initially put it down to the difference in mannerisms, maybe it be like that over here, but no.
I later overheard the same waitress say to the white couple, “hi guys, have you decided what you’d like to order?” It was nuts, like she was two different people. She even gave them complimentary shots AND offered them the dessert menu after they’d finished- mad.
But, fuck her, the food banged unlike her service.
The second experience happened when we were on the ferry travelling back from the island of Porto Santo, it was late, gone 10pm (which is late when you’ve been awake since 6.30am and it’s hot as fuck all day), as the ferry arrived back in Funchal, everyone aboard, including myself queued at the exit doors ready to leave.
A French lady accidentally knocked into me, as she turned around to apologise I was already giving her a reassuring smile, as I didn’t care that she had knocked into me, but as soon as she realised I was brown she looked absolutely terrified.
Now, I’m not a violent person, therefore, I’ve never had someone look at me genuinely scared- I was baffled.
Firstly, the floppy, long armed cow didn’t apologise and secondly, she looked at me as if I’d threatened to shank her like I had a machete lined-up across her throat.
But, I wasn’t about to let none of these small-minded pricks ruin my holiday, so more time I ignored them. Everyone stared a lot, tourists, locals, shop keepers, restaurant workers- they all just stared, it’s like they’d never seen coloured people before.
Initially, I thought we got stared at because they didn’t approve of the way my Mum and I were dressed, you know, crop tops, batty shorts, titties out and all that, but no. They just didn’t approve of our skin colour.
I couldn’t help but put it down to jealousy, because let’s face it, coloured skin just glow’s and glistens when it hits the sun, it doesn’t turn red, burn and peel… sips tea.
So, a summary of Funchal, Madeira: don’t go, don’t waste your time.
Just Google images, it’s as good as.