AIRY MOSAIC OF LISBON

Early October 2017 in Lisboa, capital of Portugal, brought quite high and unexpected temperatures of 34° Celsius, so we deserved really some coolness then which we found at diverse tremendous places of the town. This small photographic overview is not at all comprehensive as we have just been around 3 days in town, you better calculate more time for this truly fascinating town on a possible future trip.

19th century park pavillon at Jardim da Estrela with blossoming trees

Small road at upper Alfama leading down to river Tejo

View on the interior yard of Belem monastery (UNESCO world heritage)

Typical pavement of black/white scobbletones and optical illusion

Nice corner with restaurant near the old cathedral

Dadaist grafitti in house ruins near Castelo de São Jorge

Old narrow street leading on one of the diverse hills

Elevador de Santa Justa, a lift connecting 2 quarters of the city

MYTHICAL PLACES: THE HEATHEN-CAVES NEAR GOLDBACH

Heathen caves near Goldbach, steel engraving by Konrad Corrady, ca. 1850

The term ‘heathen caves’ was firstly used in the middle of the 17th century, and the term heathen is here used to describe the fact that the origin of such caves in the Western region of Lake Constance is going back to the pre-Christian period in Germany while nobody knows for sure who did the construction and when. Also the original purpose of these caves is unclear while a lot of legends still exist such as the unproven theory of the local geologist Dr. Schmidle published in the 30s of the 20th century alleging that the heathen caves were erected by the Romans and serving as sanctuaries for their Mithras cult. Roman coins were found near such caves otherwhere in the region, but this implies no real evidence. Unfortunately today there are only some small remainings of these heathen caves existing near Goldbach because starting from the middle of the 19th century until the 50s of the 20th century explosives destroyed them mostly in order to create free space for streets and modern railway connections. The original impression can only be imagined on old pictures such as the steel engraving by Konrad Corrady shown here.

Reconstruction of old village on pile dwellings from the Bronze Age
at Unteruhldingen, Lake Constance, Germany

 

 

FADO NIGHT DREAMS OF LISBON

The real spirit of a town can be often heard and felt in its typical music. The acoustic sentiment of Lisboa is the Fado music which you will find in a lot of restaurants each evening somewhere at the old town named Alfama. The name Alfama most probably has its origin in the Arabic word  الحامة (al-hamma) which is meaning bath or fountain. During the time of the Moorish seizure of the Iberian countries the Alfama comprised the whole ancient town which lateron grew to the contemporary Baixa.

The influence of the former Moorish residents is still vivid in architecture or typical Portuguese floral ceramics but also in the Fado music while the gloomy and sentimental sound is reminding me really to the melancholic desert music of the Sahara nomades at the Maghreb. Today people quite often only speak about things which separate us from each other, but our European culture was on a large scale influenced also by the Arabic world which saved for example the heritage of Greek philosophy, even our figures 1-2-3 are Arabic while the Arabs use nowadays the Indian ones in daily life, quite strange at all.

So in case you visit Lisboa sometime in your life, do not miss a Fado life performance at night because otherwise you have not really been there.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SANDY CLUES OF SAGRES / ALGARVE

When the sunset is reflected in the moisty sand of the legendary and quite windy beach of Sagres at the Algarve (Portugal) – being used mostly by surfers today due to the breezy and quite rough sea – a lot of people always join this daily spectacle at this most South-Western part of the European mainland. The region used to be always a mythical place, so not far away near the villages of Vila de Bispo and Raposeira still more than 100 menhirs can be found from the Neolithic era (ca. 3,000 – 4,000 BC). All of them were overturned and also partly destroyed lateron by Christian missionaries, but at least one menhir was re-erected (Menir do Padrão) in the meantime. The ancient Greeks named this place Ophiussa (land of the snakes) and its inhabitants Oestrimni (people of the utmost West). The Romans who seized this region 2,000 years ago preferred to call the site Promontorium sacrum (holy footlands), a magical place at the end of the world where the deities use to live and where the sun is engulfed by the ocean.

linked to  Dutch goes the Photo / Tuesday Photo Challenge Sand

SPLENDID SECRETS OF WATER

It is fascinating that water meant always more for mankind than just a fluid in order to satisfy our thirst, it can also be regarded as a magic agent substantial for life. Many of the global recorded myths have a strong focus on water like the Sumerian historical tradition mentioning a primordial ocean – embodied in the goddess Nammu – as the source of all life on Earth.

Hence, not so long ago in Sicily, at the Grotto of the Sybil, at the ancient temple of Apollo, on St. John’s Eve, 23rd June, women and girls used to visit the grotto with the belief that by drinking of the ‘prophetic water’ they would learn weather their husbands or boyfriends had been faithful to them in that particular year.

Quiet part of Starzlach Gorge near Sonthofen, Germany

Climbing clouds at Roque de las Muchachos, La Palma, Canary Islands

Water does appear in so many disguises and diverse conditions that it must be really described as a leading designer of/on our planet Earth. Just think of the tremendous gorge of the Grand Canyon or the 400 km long Lambert Glacier in Antarctica.

Each day the global weather system condenses enormous amounts of sea water and transforms them to huge chrystalline clouds being then chased by the wind at any place of the world. The clouds are in constant change of their forms – driven by the endless dancing saturated damps in the sky. This may induce finally even the sun to retreat for a couple of time.

Icy swords hanging down a roof in  Bozi Dar, Czech Republic

Foggy tree disguise in a forest near Lohr am Main, Germany

Water is also dangerous, anarchic and lawless because this fluid establishs one of the big exceptions in chemistry and physics where their logic fails to really describe the secrets of this fluid because it is more than just a molecular combination of hydrogene and oxygene.

The special structure of the water molecules and their ability to build large geometrical clusters are the typical behavioral capabilities of water. The quality of water is also increasing with a more harmonic geometrical cluster which can change depending on environmental conditions.

Early morning in the Oder valley near Krajnik Gorny, Poland

So we should really care more about this principal terrestrial reserve, these fluid endless depths mean our very original home.

INDIAN SUMMER IN THE CITY

Summer is not really over in my mind, but autumn has yet begun. Even some house facades here in Berlin now change their colours showing red and orange, but also still a lot of green. Truly one of the nicest periods in the year, especially when the sun is shining like on these photos here in late September. After a rather rainy 2017 summer here in the centre of Europe, such a colorful intermezzo in the circle of the year does please everyone.

Enmeshed in these thickets of a metropole I now say good-bye in the time being as some real summer is now waiting for me in the South.

 

linked to   The Daily Post  Weekly Photo Challenge “Glow”