Azores - Long trip to the east and a photo shoot

We spent a lot of time driving on Thursday. Our plan was to circle the east side of the island, so we started by driving to Ribeira Grande on the north shore. Since Sao Miguel is not such a big island and its center is relatively flat this only took us a good quarter of an hour.

From there we took the windy coastal road to our first highlight of the day, the waterfall of the Parque Naturel da Ribeira dos Calderoes. It was very pretty - even though we fount out that it was far from "Naturel"...

Actually there is a pipe on top of the waterfall from which the water comes down and the surroundings are very well mainteined. But we certainly weren't complaining! On the contrary: we chose it as an ideal location for a dance photo shoot.

While Mona went around taking pictures of the flowers and other details, I put on my make-up and hairpiece in the car. Thankfully there weren't too many other tourists around, so I could change into my costume a near the waterfall behind some bushes.
 Then we took pictures from several different angles which of course meant that I had to do a lot of climbing up and down rocks and around the area - which is an art by itself in a long skirt.
Just to prove again that I will do anything for a good picture!

I ended up getting closer and closer to the waterfall and then standing right into it. The water was cold and there was some slimey moss on the rock which made my velvet skirt smell funny. But we got some really good shots out of it.

You can find the results of our photo shoot on my website: MEISSOUN - Photo Gallery 
This had taken quite some time, and when we arrived at Nordeste we were really hungry. But fortunately the restaurants here always give generous portions.

With our new found energy we drove uphill until we got to the Pico Bartolomeu. The last part of it was on the rim of the mountain - just the narrow road and nothing else on both sides. It was kind of unnerving. But very much worth it for the view we had on the top.

We drove back down towards the sea and continued circling the island, finding that most of the little villages we encountered on the way were not interesting enough for a stop.
There was a nice "miradouro" (view point) on the way though. These are always announced ahead with a street sign so you don't miss them. And since the sun had come out for a change we took the opportunity to take pictures with a blue sky.

On the way home we not only saw a lot of cows on the hills but also once on the street and in a transportation vehicle in front of us. The black and white cows are definitely one of the very typical things you see here all the time.

In the evening we tried to get a table in the only vegetarian restaurant on the island just for a change. But it was already full, so we walked on until we found another nice place.
The menus here are normally all about fish and meat. And if you order pasta or rice, there will be some kind of dead animal on it for sure!