chicks & ducks & geese better scurry

XoloitzcuintleBeyond art and tchotchkes, Senora Olmedo had a diverse interest in living animals, too, such as geese, ducks, and peacocks, which she collected and kept in the gardens of her museum. And who doesn’t love a pretty peacock? However what I found most fascinating was the handful of endangered Xoloitzcuintles, a 3,000-year old native breed of hairless dog considered sacred by the Aztecs. (They believed the dogs were needed by their masters’ souls to help them safely through the underworld.) Initially I thought I was looking at a group of sleek and sinuous statues – until they moved.
xoloitzcuintlepea hens

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castelo de são jorge

After the tricked out palaces of Sintra, the shell of Castelo de São Jorge – or St. George’s Castle – is a bit of an architectural come down.  (Although it must be noted that this former fortress has borne witness to the entire sweep of Portuguese history: from the Iron Age through to the Phoenicians, Romans, and Moors.)  Occupying the highest hill in the city, the views from the citadel survey the wide expanse of Lisbon, as you’d expect. That alone makes it worth the climb. That and the peacocks.

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