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Sunday, September 30, 2012

Museums & Memorials – Lisbon (Cont.)

We have been in Turin (Torino, Italy) for two full days….  We have seen so much in Turin already that it is hard to go back to Lisbon and show you more of the things seen there.  I am sorry to say I may have to just get back to it in remembrance later.  That means; maybe in a month, or 6 months or as I have done in the Past Vacations series; a couple years from now.  For now though, I will finish with the Torre de Belém  and the Castelo de S. Jorge and hold off on the city streets and this and that of Lisbon that I had planned in my notebook.  (Yes I am trying to keep a notebook so I can remember later my thought and feelings as we go through this month.)

DSCN1613Remember in my post yesterday?  I talked about the Memorial of the Navigator and the Jeronimos Monastery, and got tired of entering photos, cutting myself short on the Maritime Museum.  The Monastery and the Maritime museums are large, multi-floor buildings.  Actually it is the same building, one end allowing DSCN1630you to walk through long halls, with high ceilings and ornate arches, of the monastery and its soring ceilinged church.  When we entered the observation end of the church there was a service in session, and a choir was singing….. it was lovely – I hope that Camillo got it on tape for the DVD he always makes after our trips. 

DSCN1640The other end of the building is attached to a newer structure, all business hallways, housing many model ships and other ‘sea captain’ tools of navigation.  The is also a large warehouse that has barges of the royals and two or three plane, one that made a Portugal – Rio de Janeiro flight, first to cross the South Atlantic.

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I can see where taking some mid-sized boys, this museum would be great fun.  I was interested but by the time we’d walked all the floors, etc.  I was in no mood for a large warehouse.  

We stopped in the café and had a coffee and I ate a quiche, then we headed up the street, across a walkway to the Torre (Tower).  It must have been about a kilometer – A long kilometer.

The tower used to be out in the sea, but, like in Rio, a large strip of sea was filled in, from the tower to the monastery.  I am guessing here – I don’t have internet to just search the DSCN1748info for you – but this strip of land is about a half to 3/4 of a kilometer wide; there is a road and trolley tracks in front of the monastery, then a garden and parking lot, bus drop-off area, then a highway with a intercity train tracks running up the center, then a marina, garden and parking lots for the tower.  A fascinating engineering story all on its own.

Finally the Torre de Belem:

The structure is actually a small structure.  Once I got inside I took off my shoes and walked barefoot – ah what a relief -  I walked up into the upper tower, Camillo stayed down on the first level.  I am glad I had my shoes off because the steps got smaller and smaller as you go up – and without shoes my feet fit much better on the space allowed.  There is only one set of steps so from time to time going up and down you had to ‘step aside’ to let someone going the opposite  way pass by – that was fun…..

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Okay, no Castelo tonight.  I will start telling you about Torino if I post tomorrow.  I am surprised that except for a dish of gelato on the piazza Costello, I don’t yet have good food to talk about.  Maybe we have been too tired for food to taste good.  Will let you know about that later.


Saturday, September 29, 2012

Museums and Memorials–Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal

DSCN1503I know we did only two days in Lisbon; half day on Wednesday, all day on Thursday and a half day on Friday, but Camillo was the organizer of what DSCN1507we saw when, and I think we did really well in a very short time.  We stayed in a hotel in the central historic center, ate and walked near the hotel, down to the sea as the sun set on Wednesday evening. 

DSCN1557On Thursday we went by private car out to see the Memorial of the Navigators, (Padrão dos Descobrimentos), the Jerónimos Monastery, The Maritime Museum  (Museu de Marinha) and the Torre de Belém.  All of these museums and monuments are within (relatively) easy walking distance from one to the other.  The problem is when you walk all around each, then go to the next and the next, it become pretty hard on your feet.  We did the rounds in about five hours, plus a light lunch.  Then after a rest at the hotel, we went by taxi up to the Castle (Castelo de S. Jorge) walked around, watching the sunset, and afterward walked down passing by the Se (the archbishops seat) to the historic center for dinner; another two hours.  Might have been better to split all the major sites between two day, but well, we only had one full day…. so we hurt a little but saw a lot.

Photos in order:  Memorial of the Navigators

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 Mosteiro dos Jerónimos & Museu de Marinha: Taken from the Roof of the Memorial - to the right the tour of the monastery and on the left the entrance to the Maritime Museum.

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I am not a ship or sailboat enthusiast but enjoyed this extensive display of model ships through history and the world exploration by the Portuguese. 

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Enough!!  Tomorrow more – When I am home, with a better internet connection I will download slide shows.  For now will continue to record the trip in date order….

Friday, September 21, 2012

high above Rio….

just about as high as you can get without flying – everyone who visits Rio tries to visit at least once and looking up is what they do.

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One of my favorite things to do in Rio is to show visitors.  This trip up last weekend  – high above the city was right at dusk.  So we saw the lights come on, both those highlighting The Christ and way below us in the city.


Below us is the Sugar Loaf and the barrio of Botafogo.  See the shadow of The Christ on the water as the sun sets.  Across the bay, Niteroi.











The lights are coming on all around the Lagoa.  With the jockey club on the right and Ipanema crowded against the sea.











Around on the other side, central, the Rio-Niteroi bridge showing in the fading light and lights from the ships waiting to load and unload their cargos flash in the distance.











Finally full dark arrives, time to make our way back to Ipanema.













One last glance over our shoulder – once again looking up because one look is never enough.