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...tantas Saudades...!!!

Sunday, October 13, 2013
''Cada passo que se dà nesta cidade do inferno, 
nos traz cada vez mais saudades 
dum paraiso que nunca foi...!''
- Luciano Pimèntel, 2013

Now, having stated this does not mean 
that there aren't exceptions - 
for there are, and plenty of them,
even if they only reaffirm the ruling... 
Hereby, following, are some images of those exceptions 
(mostly of them, yes; but we reserve the right 
to have as diverse a portfolio as can be...!) 
those elements that make even a helltown 
worthy of taking a stroll in, sometimes...

Here, today, you will see me verse nostalgic 
-yet again- 
but in the manner accustomed to other blogs 
that are part of this ''TLB Prime Network'' -
via many... many... ''luminous connections'' 
which are, if one was to define them at last, 
brightening thoughts and reflections 
about everything - and anything. 
The mere act of establishing a series of 
only underlines as it emulates 
the basic thought process of one and all - 
only, here, it is put into words... 
And enhanced by some pre-determined visualizations as well.

For the author of this blog is, also, quite the amateur photographer! 
***Has Lumix, Is Luminous, Will Peregrinate!*** 
He is, also, the avid Luminous Pedestrian indeed;
an ''urban explorer'' of note...
A fine observer, he used to take note of every little thing 
he'd spot, during said explorations... 
Now, he photographs them, too...
Let us see what resulted of that exercise now...

La Maison Saint-Gabriel;
it's been there for so very long... 
It saw the hellish slums sprout out 
all about it - and gave them its blessing, too. 
For whatever else was there to do? 

Spontaneous art can be seen... and heard... 
at every corner - almost. 
For example: Sophia has been there for a while, now...

Still, the rigid structures present there 
make ''Art - avec un grand A'' 
something mostly part of a system 
that ''eliticizes'' the entire process...
(Making up new words - or new verbs: my prerogative.)
For every freebie out there, during Festival season, 
there are ten more indoors events 
catering only to those with greater 
luxury purchasing power... 
The usual venues are the culprits, always:
La Place Des Arts... 
L'Espace Go... 
Les Grands Ballets...

The innocence that lays there -
was it ever more than a mere illusion?
Still, it is nice to see an attempt 
at resurrecting a myth 
and a fairytale beloved by most...
One which brings back memories 
of a time gone by, 
and of lost innocence...

An actress who counted amongst the many 
that were esteemed by my mother and countless relatives; 
she was, in fact, of little virtue in her youth 
and perished far too young, in part due 
to having had a daughter who took too much 
after her - and then took it even further... 
A lesson learned, by proxy: 
how valuable...
It is with the years that we appreciate those
all the more.

Innocence is fleeting, at best... 
The boy inside the man lives on, though...!
After my collecting of the Dominican Bruin, 
Portuguese Bruin and Parisian Bruin, 
I beheld the most natural thing: 
the Brazilian Bruin... couple! 
Couldn't bring those home, though:
hence the pic...!
And speaking of Brasil...

For years, I've crossed that parish, 
that statue of Christ, which evokes Rio indeed, 
in the midst of a street that does see 
many a Brazilian trot by... 
Many a Portuguese expatriate, too... 
Rachel St. is where I go to get my beloved 
Pasteis de Nata, after all...!
As a child, I used to admire 
that splendid structure, architecture
so enhanced as it is by that statue right there...
This St-Jean-Baptiste church, though 
is quite the study of contradictions...
Observe the Christ...

Do you see something wrong with the EYES...?
Maybe it is not so evident *contre-jour*...
Try this angle:

The statue of Christ has been vandalized 
a long, LONG time ago: 
this crimson ''mask'' has been defacing it 
for many YEARS, from what I have been able 
to observe... And nothing has been done 
to undo this vile act...
And yet... AND YET...
Behind the statue, on the church's very wall, 
there is this banner upon which we can read 

Seems like that sizeable investment 
has still not been quite enough 
if you cannot protect the sacred 
from a mere little vandal 
with a can of spray paint 
aiming at making Christ Himself 
look like a super-hero.
Great job protecting ''le patrimoine''  
(religieux ou autre)

That's the same town, 
province... would-be-country... 
which simply loves to celebrate 
''la Saint-Jean-Baptiste'' 
each and every year, in June...
Of course, they think not one iota of the saint 
but, rather, focus entirely upon 
the meaning that was tacked on 
and attributed to it, by the populace 
and the biased government, both: 
a fictive ''national feast'' 
for an equally fictive nation...
It never ceased to puzzle me, as a child - 
it won't stop annoying me now, as an adult!
But speaking of ''patrimoine religieux''
from those parts...

There has never been a single better picture taken 
of this shrine - by anyone, at any time; 
and certainly not by any sanctioned, 
deemed to be ''official photographer'' 
of the shrine in question...!
À bon entendeur... et entendeuse... salut!

My single most favorite station 
in the entire Garden of the 
Way of the Cross there; 
how many times did my parents and I 
walk in that great garden...? 
Thank you Ercolo Barbieri 
thank you Louis (non pas Lucien - dommage!) Parent, 
for making it so splendid! 
Thank you, Joao Jacinto Borges Pimentel 
and Maria Adelina D.C. Pimentel 
for taking me there so often as you did...! 

On second, deeper thought, 
maybe this is my true most favorite place 
in the entire Shrine: 
a little bit of a preview 
of the New Earth 
after the Final Judgment...

How many times did I see this light fixture, too? 
For the longest time, 
the child that I was imagined this 
to be some sort of an extension 
(a gigantic not-so-secret tunnel, really!) 
connecting directly to that Shrine...!

Since it looks like a crown, too, 
why not rest our eyes again 
upon the Christ... 
bearing yet another sin of the world.
Tenha piedade, Senhor...

E falando Português...
My father would shop here, so often, too...
It still exists, but somewhat modernized; 
it adopted the Jean-Coutu formula 
of finding everything there, even a friend...
''AMI'' ou amigo...
O Marché ou Mercado Benfeito 
is where it's at...!
If you like choriço e azeite...!

The Portuguese have such good taste 
in decorating their front lawns, too...
Art worthy of that created by 
Ercolo Barbieri, 
whom we mentioned but a second earlier, 
or his esteemed Shrine-colleague, 
Henri Charlier...

And since we speak of the Shrine yet again...

I obtained the searched for effect 
not with the Lumix but with my smart phone! 
The Shrine has, very nearly at its feet, 
this ''Metro'' grocery store...
I remember when it was a Steinberg grocer there; 
some of the evidence of that is still to be found, 
if one looks for it, snooping around 
like a sort-of-Indiana-Jones specializing 
in recent urban changes rather than 
real archaeological treasure...
- which is not all that hard 
since next to zero digging is required here! 

And speaking of stores; makes me think of merchandise...

Thus, back at the Shrine, meanwhile, 
I was always amazed how little people knew 
about its founder...!
 Details such as his real name being Alfred 
and not André at all; 
now, certainly, nowadays there are a lot more 
Andrés around than there can be Alfreds -
but the fact that the name ''André'' sells out 
in their Souvenir Shop so often 
is truly attributable to the perception 
that this is the saint's name...
when it is not.

How long have I seen this hole-hearted angel, too? 
Not quite nextdoor to that shrine: but in the same city 
and definitely in the same vein...

I'd much rather prefer to meet one like this; 
even if he is one of those sounding the trumpets 
for the Final Reckoning...! 

There are many angels, in that shrine; 
and ever since my first visit there, 
circa 1975, I have been utterly
 fascinated by them all...

The second greatest picture ever taken 
of that shrine - by... moi! 

And, arguably, the third...! 
A picture taken thanks to an accomplice:
le Duc de Lorraine...!

A shot from the inside - finally...

The luminous founder of that Shrine... 
Verily, the Holy Cross Congregation 
- aka Congrégation de Sainte-Croix - 
never saw a brighter soul 
amongst their ranks...

And the very spot where he was found the most, 
for close to forty years of his life...
Try and spot the five differences 
between the two shots above,
which were taken five hours apart, too...

And there are other fabulous houses of God 
on that island, too...

Houses of the arts as well...

A mere few steps away 
from that hole-hearted angel, in fact 
(a hole-chested one, truly!) 
this Museum which I love -
but from afar, really...

How many times have 
Luminous Luciano 
and Dangerous Dave 
crossed that bridge...?
And yet, only once 
did they cross each other there...!

Seen like this, Laval retains, still, 
after all these years, somehow, 
its air of ''countryside'' away from 
''the big (corrupt) city''...

A most polluted countryside, in truth...
And just as corrupted, too! Alas! 
But that is another story, as we like to say...

Home to the stallions - paradoxically enough...

And that blasphemous all-seeing eye of CBS 
ever present there, of all places, 
just adds (ads?) to the overall spookiness...

Still, there are good things there, too...
There are flowers...



Old friends 

and places we will never forget, really, 
on both islands indeed - 
isles we take a malin plaisir 
likening to some sort of 
modern-day, 21st century, 
new millennium version of...
Sodom and Gomorrah!
''But that is another story...'' 
as we always say, actually!

All Photography - and text, too! 
Copyright - 2013 and Beyond
Luciano A. Pimèntel

Sempre Por O Melhor!

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Born in the Age of Aquarius, destined to seek out truths in many an art form, trained as a historian and a journalist but truly a prose-lover... Luciano is out to dispel any clichés and reinvent them all both to the tune of a little something called the truth as also to his own image - and being old-fashioned, he does not mind that distinction one infinitesimal tiny bit at all...! "There are two ways to spread the light; be the candle... or the mirror that reflects It." I have chosen to be the latter... okay? ~*~ "To be not only a seeker of light... but a dream weaver of light" ~*~ For as surely as the moon reflects the light from the sun, you and I can reflect the Light from Above - and be, indeed, the light of this world! ~*~*~*~

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