I like a fishy story. Don’t you? Truth to tell this one isn’t much of a story at all, and it’s not what I had intended to post. But if you can’t be spontaneous in your own space… well, it’s a poor show! It all started with a seahorse…
‘Let’s go to Olhão!’, I said. ‘There’s a new seahorse sculpture and some net things up in the streets’. What more of an invitation do you need? The Ria Formosa, just offshore from Olhão, is known for its seahorses, and you can take a very delightful trip over to the sandbars to hunt for them. Stuff of dreams? A little less exciting, the sculpture, looking out to sea.
But Olhão is one of those ‘love it, hate it’ places. Full of character, if you want to be polite. Desperately shabby in the back streets, but in the process of acquiring a shiny new waterfront for the visitors. The marina is always a treat, as you watch the boats to and fro-ing to the islands, but the riverside gardens are currently being torn up and replaced. Hopefully they will retain some of their character, and the wonderful azulejo benches. So uncomfortable to sit on, but beautiful to behold. But we’ve not come to sit, invitingly though the icecream van flutters its eyelids at the tables beside the water. The Arab quarter is always beguiling, so long as you don’t mind getting a little lost in the narrow tumble of streets. Spot the whale on the roof? No, I didn’t see it either at first.
I’m heading for the pedestrianised shopping area- not to shop, but this is where I think I might catch a fish or two. And certainly some street art!
Olhão has a fair claim to being the street art capital of the Algarve. The work depicting the fishing industry is among my favourites anywhere. But finally I find what I’m looking for, and yet it still comes as a surprise. Fish cavort above my head, darting through nets and flipping their tails. ‘Linda‘ says the sign over the shop- beautiful- and I have to agree.
I wander along, snapping and exclaiming, until I come to the main church square, where an exhibition catches my eye. I read the text and take a pic or two, and then I notice that the other half is staring skywards. He’s spotted the storks. Attention completely diverted.
I circle around the building, happy to find so many at home. Did you notice the time on the clock? I did, simply because at 3 on a Saturday afternoon I usually attend a Zoom meeting with some lovely ladies. Some of you will know that Becky spends most winters here in the Algarve, and that Olhão is her home of choice. I wondered if she might like to share the moment.
Back we wandered to a favourite café, with a ringside view of the leaping life above our heads. All was quiet in the heat of the afternoon. At weekends in summer the Portuguese go to the beach, leaving the towns strangely empty. Though empty in these days is not so strange! We settle at a table, with a refreshing wine, and I make the call. ‘Would you like to come for a walk?’ And so I retrace my steps, waving my phone at the sky in the hope that they might see the fish, and maybe a stork or two.
I did promise you a fishy story. I hope you weren’t disappointed?
And now some shares! A lucky dip into my ‘likes’ introduced me to Helen. Please stop by and say hello?
Drake has his own individual take on life, and he always makes me smile :
I always like to share stunning photos, and these from Mercedes are beautiful :
Rupali shows us the beauty of her world :
And Indra takes me to a city I’ve always wanted to visit :
Anabel is rightly proud of her heritage, despite ‘dreich’ weather :
While Margaret juggles with words :
And Natalie joins in with my fishy theme :
Becky and I share a love for the same places :
A bit of an aberration with the print in the shares! Made me rather late publishing today. Apologies if I’ve missed anybody. It’s not so easy keeping track right now. Too many distractions. I won’t be walking with you next week. It’s seriously hot! Enjoy your summer/winter/life! See you soon.