quarta-feira, outubro 17, 2007

Day 8 - Ebora Cerealis and its soup

On day 8, I had two books in my hands. Under Pascal's advice and due to the vouchers he gave me as a birthday present, I bought Pope Joan (which I already finished reading and that everyone should read!) and Ensaio sobre a cegueira by Jose Saramago. This last author is not that easy, as far as my experience tells me, but I will try, as I read great reviews on this book!

On that day, I went for a quick trip to Lisbon with my mother. My father picked us up at Alameda. There's a huge fountain there. But, god knows why, I have seen it working maybe twice my whole life! Now, why do you want a nice big fountain if it's not working?

We drove to a typical city market in Odivelas, where my father likes shopping for fresh stuff. They bought a huge sea-bream that we later ate and it was divine!
It's a pity I don't like the way fish is cooked in Japan, specially at school, where we are given a ridiculous portion always with the same soy sauce... No way!

After that, we headed to Canecas to have lunch at my uncle and aunt's place. It was very nice indeed. And I learned that my younger cousin is playing football at a local football club, after quitting Benfica, which was way too difficult for her. Diana is crazy, as she is always doing stuff! Good for her, though! She's not lazy like me!

Lunch finished and my parents and I decided to go to Evora. But we had to stop at home.
As I said before, my father wouldn't let me drive, because, according to him, and as I had not driven in almost 2 years, I was unable to do it. But, out of the blue, and on our way home, he stopped the car (3 minutes away from where we live) and told me to take the car. He needed to go somewhere and get some cheese for the dog (yes, my dog is fancy, but he's not the only one eating cheese at home!). I was surprised... And I even had to ask which was the break and which was the gas... Woooo... My father started yelling that maybe it wasn't a good idea and so on... You know, I think he should have encouraged me instead of behaving in such a stupid way!
Anyway, I told him to go away and drove away! I didn't even forget the sidelights! Good boy, am I not?
Off I went with my mother grabbing her seat!
Down the road we got to a big roundabout. And I let the car die! Damned manual gears! But I took care of that: pulled the handbreak, started the thing and off we went! And nobody died! Well, I almost did when I realized that I drove with the handbreak on for 1 minute and my father found about it! But, hey, the car was perfectly parked! And I didn't kill any old lady or cat or bug!

We drove to Evora. I was quite tired, but I didn't fall asleep... And my mother, according to herself, didn't either...

My mother was born in Evora, a city 150 km. away from Lisbon. Which, with my father driving, takes just over an hour. I love going there because the landscape is so calm and smoothing and just crossing the bridges in Lisbon over the river is great!
Besides, Evora takes me back to the summers I spent there with our neighbor Mariana. She was a sweet old lady and since she died I never again spent a full vacation there! I just can't, because it got so uninteresting! I remember we sat out in the front yard and talked and talked.
Or the times I went there with my grandparents and we would go out and my grandfather would stop 100 times just to talk to people he knew from his youth. I miss that so much...
But one thing I still love is the breeze at the end of a very hot summer day... It's unlike anything else I know... And the light! Oh, the light...

We stopped at a cousin's house... My dog needed some beverage...

And here's the city, with all the white houses, with just one stripe of color...

And here's the reason why I wanted to go to Evora so bad: my mother's uncle and aunt. I specially wanted to see my aunt, as she went through a really though time! I love talking to her.
Their place has looked the same ever since I remember! Sometimes it's good to go to places that never change...

I love this one:

I remember my grandmother telling me this is the tower of the five corners! And it is indeed true!

Right downtown, there's this Roman temple, Diana's temple. It always reminded me that the things I studied in school about the Roman Empire and it's achievements were indeed true! It's really impressive and I have never seen anything like it...

Unfortunately, there are many stupid people in Portugal. Canadians are retarded, Portuguese are stupid:
My mother and I saw two women on the thing, taking pictures. My mother, as any good Portuguese person, started grumbling out loud about them being there. But Angelo got closer to them and told them that they shouldn't be there, that that place was a national monument and should be preserved and that there was a security rail for some reason! The ladies apologized and said that they understood that and that they only went there because they had seen someone else doing it and that they didn't know that the security rail shouldn't be overcome.
My answer was that if the rail was there it was for some good reason and that they didn't have to apologize to me, as that monument belongs to everybody! Imagine if everybody that goes to Evora goes on the thing!? I can't stand dumb people! I get itchy!
Besides, and like we say in Portuguese, " if you see someone throwing itself into a well, will you follow that person?". I rest my case!

Now that I come to think of it, this must be a nice way of actually visiting the city!

Here's the cathedral of Evora.

I really like this city. In fact, I wouldn't mind living there, if I had a car and air con everywhere I went...

My grandparents got married at that church over there... Right in the middle of the city. And its floor is quite interesting: it has many tombs, all covered in wood. Really cool!

Inside this building there's a very interesting chapel, covered with bones of many monks... It's scary, but indeed interesting! I just can't take my dog there...

And Evora is so cool that it has some peacocks around the city market, next to the city park. We even saw one of them flying!

Another reason why I wanted to go to Evora was to eat sopas de cacao, a kind of soup with bread and a fish called, according to the dictionary, squalus! And we got lucky, because we found a restaurant serving that for dinner (not very common, on a Saturday evening), plus it was absolutely divine! I ate like a pig!

(I want to go on with this thing, but the site decided to go crazy and is taking forever to upload the pictures. Besides it's already over 1 in the morning... The good thing is that tomorrow I don't have classes! Shhhh!)

(It's the morning of another day, and I am going to try and go on with the thing. I've been having the strangest dreams! The last one involved Professor Maria Helena Paiva Correia - one of the best professors I've ever had! - and me seeing her passport!)

(The site is going through some kind of maintenance...)

The restaurant was really cool and the waiter was really nice. And I found the tap was really cool too!

Here's the soup that drove me crazy! Absolutely delicious!

And what better way to end the feast than by having a chocolate mousse? Again, DIVINE! It's a pity they don't have it here in Japan! But maybe I'll make some one day with the kids at school!

After dinner, we returned home.

And here I am indulging in some more arroz doce. And, yes, I was in bed having it and it felt great! I was on holidays and everything is allowed!

And yet another day had come to an end...

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