Sunday, July 6, 2008

Beautiful Portugal

Snapshots of Figueroa del Foz, our first stop in Portugal after renting a little Fiat in Lisbon and driving north and towards the coast, pleased to find that navigating the main motorway, at least, was not too difficult (the smaller, twistier, steeper roads of the Beiras were a different story!).
Below are small fishing boats anchored in the harbour using a pulley system that apparently allows them to be pulled in to shore, rather than requiring a dinghy.

Apparently, this huge expanse of beach will be crowded as soon as the weather is better. Can you tell (from my hair) that it's rather windy? I love the mosaic patterns made in cobblestone in Portuguese cities -- they often change from block to block, providing a charming distraction as you walk along.
Here's a detail:I found Portugal so beautiful, everywhere, that it was hard to put my camera away. You couldn't go very far without finding a building covered with these azulejos, a mark of the country's Moorish past.
Now I'd better go prepare for my young visitors' (mentioned here) breakfast requests. Their uncle tired them out royally yesterday with a brilliant Amazing Race challenge that had them covering the length and breadth of the island several times over. I'll have to come up with a plan for today, although we only have a few more hours together before we take them to the ferry.

I'm also going to be preparing an Anniversary Post, with a contest (with prizes!!) and all. I've just this minute checked for a link to my first post which I thought was last July 7th and which also mentioned my young nieces and nephew. Guess how surprised I was to find out that I've missed my Anniversary already by a day!! I'll have to hustle to get something up marking it, but meanwhile here's a link to one of those first posts. And I'll get my Anniversary Contest up and running later today or early tomorrow.

So be sure to come visit me soon to find out the details. Hope you're enjoying the sunshine wherever you are.


  1. I love the tiles and the cobblestones - it's great to see how many ordinary, everyday things are so beautiful in Europe. We were surprised that many of the smaller streets in Athens were paved with marble - it seems to luxurious now, but I guess that was what was at hand at the time.

    Bye the way, I just finished reading the last of the comments on your last but one post, the one featuring the dress-and-leggings combo. I found Editor's comments particularly helpful - you see, yesterday we went into town and I bought a dress in the sales. It's from a cheapish, casual shop, but I somehow really liked it, although looked at critically it's just a grey shift with some weird ruching at the hips. Now, the waistline may be going, but everything else is still pretty straight ;0) so I think that it will look nice in the summer with black cropped pants and in the winter with black tights and boots. However, it obviously hadn't been a hit first time round as there were several left and the price had been dropped a couple of times (from 5000 forints to 3000 to 1500 - yes, it sounds a lot, but it's actually only around $9 in the end!). I had some nagging doubts but in the end decided to go with my instinct - it's kind of quirky looking, and I like that. So, reading Editor's comments has given me confidence in my choice - there, an interesting read, AND a public service to boot!! Patricia

  2. Patricia: you're lucky to have such a long time to savour the everyday delights of Europe.
    I'm glad to know that reading my blog helped you buy a new dress, altho' I know it was the commenters, and not me, that provided the push ;-) I especially liked the conversation after that post, and, like you, I found editor's comments inspiring -- have you checked out her blog yet?
    I think that as our waistlines are perhaps softening a bit with age, our self-knowledge should be increasing and we should finally be honouring our own instincts in dressing ourselves -- I bet your dress is great on, with its quirks perhaps enhancing your own!

  3. Amazing Race was soooo much fun and your lemon cake rocks..mmmm.Rachel

    I'm still knitting...i knit on the ferry..i knit in the car...i knit in the hall...and i am knitting myself to sleep. Grace

    Thanks so much for a spectacular weekend.

  4. Yes, that is the positive side, you are no longer a tourist. It does have it's challenges though! Next week it will be a year since we came. Two more years, then it's back to the Land of the Round Doorknobs - probably Ottawa.

    Having said that, this week we do get to play tourist, as our friends arrive this morning. They already sent a package as they have been travelling for a couple of weeks - not only maple syrup, but also Magic Erasers and large boxes of baking soda, plus waxed dental floss and my rose hipseed oil from the health food store! (I'm sure there are all sorts of assumptions to be made about us on the strength of this list!) Patricia

  5. The tiles are very beautiful. I have a small 7 year old that would love to join in your island races! She wears me out daily.
    As for sunshine, I walked to work in wellies!

  6. Hey Kids: Thanks for commenting. I had fun this weekend too!
    Patricia: Enjoy your visitors, and have fun with all that baking soda ;-)
    Alison: I have new respect for the wearing-out abilities of the world's seven-year olds! Too bad about the wellies.


I'd love to hear your response to my post. Agree, disagree, even go off on a tangent, I love to know you're out there, readers. Let's chat, shall we? I apologize, though, for the temporary necessity of the Word Verification -- spam comments have been tiresomely numerous lately, and I'm hoping to break that pattern.

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