Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Friendly Fountains

We wandered through the town of Portimao, Portugal today.

Every town and city we have visited so far has public artworks scattered throughout: sculptures, murals, mosaics and more. And frequently modern and often bizarre. I remember the furor over the installation of the sculpture of the demi-god Maui at the Kahului airport. One public installation of art and it was a scandal; how silly.

We loved the variety of fountains in this town and how children (and Doug and Don) friendly they were. Most of the ones we encountered erupted at ground level through grates or between gaps in the pavement. Perfect for walking through or playing in. One street had big gushing fountains down the middle which would turn off every time a car approached so the traffic could drive through. How cool. Another was a tunnel of water jets with foot buttons in the pavement so you could turn the ends off to be able to walk through. We went through several times each (click HERE for the video).

There were ruins near the ship so we climbed over the wall today and explored the crumbling structure. Way cool! Someone told us it was the old port authority building, but that is all we know. We found lots of graffiti and some stashed clothing.

Our ship left port this afternoon and we will be at sea for the next two plus days.

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