Monday, January 14, 2013

Day 5 Santarem, stirring conclusion

So we dropped off Gyu eon and the laundry and I grabbed an umbrella just in case.

Two sites stood out for me, Portas do Sol and Igreja da Graca. Portos do Sol is like the Great Wall of Santarem. When I first looked out over the wall, I felt like we were hundreds of meters above the world. It's an illusion though-- Santarem is just 130 meters but the surrounding land is completely flat in all direction for a great distance. It's a neat effect and an inspiring view. We saw several young couples sneaking kisses around the park. It's not a private place but like I said, it is inspiring. I snuck a few kisses with my girl.

Rain came and sent the young lovers and and other sight seers scurrying fit cover. We whipped up the umbrella and snuck a few more kisses.

We wandered, not trying too hard to stay on the tourist route our friendly tourist guru had suggested but ended up at most if the sites anyway.

Igreja da Graca (Igreja means church) stood out for me. It's so open that I though the inside was still outside, like the main door was a gate. It has very little ornamentation. The simplicity was so beautiful that I didn't even notice the rose window (for which it is famous) until JH pointed it out. It is a bare church, no organ, no balcony, no extra rooms, spartan pews. A church for the truly devout. The most ornate thing in it is the sarcophagus of the first governor of Morocco.

Gyu eon was feeling better so with a recommendation and a dot on a map we went out for dinner at bull-fighting themed Taberna do Quinzena. Portuguese style Roast beef, grilled pork, and prawn kebab... Fantastic.

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