Exploring new places is a wonderful thing. I totally enjoy it when I get the chance.
It's not so much the travel I enjoy. Travel, in and of itself, can be a red hot steaming, miserable, hair yanking face scrunching mess. This time it wasn't bad at all. The flights went off without a hitch although coming into Funchal had more than it's fair share of bumpity-thumpities.
One of the rituals I enjoy the least about flying is deplaning. It is that time when the flight and cabin crew stand at the door saying "having a nice day" or "enjoy your holiday". That's what they're saying but I have a feeling it's not what they really mean.
As we left the plane I thanked the captain for his safe landing. I said, "Thanks for the ride cowboy!". I'm glad he took it in stride. It even got a bit of a chuckle. We did get down safely. I suppose that's all that counts. I was truly grateful be on the ground without any injuries.
Madeira is a tiny(ish) island in the Atlantic 425 miles off the coast of Morocco. It's apparently a favorite holiday spot for Europeans. The island had over one million visitors last year. We heard several European languages in addition to Portuguese (Madeira is a territory of Portugal). We heard German, French, Norwegian and Russian spoken there. (Oh yeah - we heard English too)
The people we met were very friendly and helpful.
Our holiday was filled with mountain walks some even above the clouds, a steep and swingy cable car ride, pebbly beach walks and strolls along a beautifully maintained promenade by the sea.
In downtown Funchal, there is a street called Rua de Santa Maria not far from the big cruise ship harbor. The doors on this street have been given over to artists. The art work ranges from the beautifully skilled and well thought out to the not so beautiful. I can say truthfully that it was all very interesting and increased the vibrancy and good feeling of the old town area.
A local waiter told me the door painting began as the result of a flood some time in the past and the doors occasionally get painted over with new art. Kinda makes you want to come back and see what's new occasionally. I don't remember the whole story. I suppose I didn't pay enough attention.
Apparently I did have the presence of mind to snap a bunch of photos as I gawked like everybody else walking down the street. You just can't help it. At least I can't help it. I loved the feel of street art on Rua de Santa Maria .
For me, it was one of the highlights of my trip. Thats where little poster of the painted doors of Funchal was born. There are over 200 doors painted. I only captured some of what was there. The diversity of the art was heartwarming.
It's now the screensaver on my phone.
What do I know? Well - I know what I like - and I liked this.
BTW - you can enlarge the photo by clicking on it.
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Until then, please do your best to enjoy life.