TODAY’S PHOTO : The municipal gardens in Ribeira Brava … a lovely spot with all sorts of trees and plants in well kept grass gardens. Lots of ducks, stray cats, and 10 peacocks, including 3 chicks just a few days old with one that may be albino (see the blog photo tomorrow). Also as the building used to be a sugar production factory in olden times, some of the machinery is on display in the gardens.
Front Page News : source : Diário de Notícias 2/7/2008
Many of the 150 building projects underway on Madeira at the moment rely on expropriated land (the forced sale of private land), but the acquisition of the necessary lands is proving to be a problem, with owners refusing to sell at the price offered, or through the absence of identified legal owners, and also as this article highlights, through inaccurate and outdated information in the registry and finances offices. There are thousands of expropriations necessary, and project plans and building works are being held up because they cannot be processed quickly enough.
4 people out in a boat near Fajã dos Padres (Ribeira Brava) all decided to go for a swim together and got into trouble when strong winds took their boat out to sea. Luckily the incident was seen from the land, a 112 call was made, and the rescue service retrieved all four and their boat. It is against maritime laws to leave a boat empty and unanchored at sea.
The other two front page stories are about the lowering of IVA / VAT (has anybody actually noticed?), and the impact of the ‘victory’ of Mugabe in Zimbabwe on Portuguese emigrants in South Africa.
Other News :
The ´Blue Flag´ on our beaches signifies that the quality of the water is good enough to swim in and is pretty much free of pollution, but of course that promise is only as good as the day that the tests are made. It is reported that the newly reopened Lido swimming complex has for the last 3 or 4 days had oily water and floating rubbish in its sea access area, possibly as a result of boat cleaning elsewhere. That has not put off the swimmers however, because as far as what they see, as long as there is a blue flag, then it must be clean even if there is rubbish floating under your nose.
SATA (the Azores based airline) already has a weekly flight between Madeira and Paris, and next summer plans to double the frequency. When the first flight was introduced in 2007, it was considered that there would be sufficient demand for the summer season only, but the actual demand proved to be enough to run the operation all year round.
In an effort to get recognised for tourism, Porto Santo is selling itself in Britain, as the chosen holiday destination for footballer Cristiano Ronaldo, with some success. It’s stretching the truth though most certainly, but as CR has not has a mention yet this month I thought I would jump at the chance.
The Funchal Jazz Festival starts today and runs through to Saturday, I can’t tell you more than that, though if you are in Funchal you probably know more than me.
This week I mentioned that the Diário had a guide to the 50 best picnic spots on Madeira, but I couldn’t find it online. I got hold of a copy from the actual newspaper, and it’s pretty useful, but obviously it’s too big to include in the blog. It shows for each location : car parking, bbq cooking facilities, drinking water availability, and picnic tables. In fact as I can’t show it to you I don’t know why I mentioned it again really!
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