Coastal resorts, but not as we know them

Have you ever stood at the sweets display fridge in a large café or restaurant and looked at all the brightly-coloured, glazed, gooey looking tarts and cakes thinking individually these look sort of disgusting and sickly after a big meal, but what a wonderful display? Well this is my impression of the streetscape of Barra and Costa Nova. A riot of colour, textures, styles makes for a refreshingly unfamiliar place where you would expect retired conservatism should dominate the mood. There appears to be a long tradition of extravagant architecture. It must be great to be an architect here. The clients are crazy and the council approves everything!

Oh and there’s an amazing beach with good looking surf. Having said the surf looks good, the rips looked pretty deadly and it’s winter and it’s the Atlantic! Speaking of crazy, or is it just enjoying life to the fullest, I saw two blokes bobbing about in Lasers, sailing across the bar and into the harbour entrance with walls of concrete and rock either side of them and an evil looking tide rushing out to sea. Ballsy!



Lovely pics – again. Our suburbia is so bland. The little old Chinese house reminds me of Malacca in Malaysia which was owned at various times by England, Holland and Portugal (and probably others – Spain?). When I was there eons ago, you could see all the various styles of colonial architecture in the old streets. The architect who did the rusty iron facades has also built a residential complex at Kingston in the ACT; it’s very similar, down to the old iron bits with blue, Canberra sky above. I don’t know how the architects organise the skies like that. And finally, the wharf-on-sticks. Time team should go and have a look at this. It explains a lot of the stuff they dig out of various fens and creeks. It also looks just like Asian constructions in the Malacca Straits, only they use bamboo. Have you checked out the farms to the South of Aveira? They look like medieval strip farms – many hectares of them. At least one is producing strawberries; if they are all doing that, the area may be the source of all the strawberries in Europe.

I just love the colours – they remind me of, as a child, tipping out a box of Smarties or liquorice allsorts. By the way, I reckon the main pic is a two-dimesional film set.
Concerning your ‘Not all who wonder’ article attributing the invention (if that’s the right word!) of marmalade to Portugal, I looked up ‘marmalade’ in the dictionary as I know that Portuguese marmelada is actually quince jelly. For those out there who are now intrigued this is what I found.
‘ Marmalade n. A preserve made from the pulp and rind of citrus fruits, especially oranges. ( French marmelade, from Portuguese marmelada, “quince jam”, from marmelo, quince, from Latin melimelum, from Greek melimelon, “honey-apple”, the fruit of an apple tree grafted on a quince: meli, honey + melon, apple, fruit)’.
Now, what was my point? What was I doing when I had a life

Categories: Architecture, Beaches, Portugal | Leave a comment

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