A Sunday Afternoon in the ByWard Market (Ottawa)

A Sunday Afternoon in the ByWard Market (Ottawa)

The Elusive Fountain of Youth

There are images on the web, there are blog posts describing it, there is even a TripAdvisor review for it, yet this fountain of youth is as elusive for us as is the Loch Ness Monster.

To recap… This morning, we (ok, I) had read with flourish and a note to the effect of Take a sip and let the years fade away…  that a Fuente del Aceituno laid at the back of the church in Sacromonte. As the Mirador de San Nicolas (viewpoint) and the Albayzin Moorish quarter was on today’s visiting list for the family, I knew that the Sacromonte neighborhood was but a very short distance away. We had taken a minibus to get us to the Plaza de San Nicolas as the tiny winding roads were quite steep, but I was able to convince the family to walk down so as to enjoy the view and the many cave-like houses and establishments encased in the rocky hillside on our way to town.

Upon the crossroad to Sacromonte, I made my case for its authentic Roma community and… The Fountain of Youth! Especially after last evening’s tapas tour where Justin and I realized we were the only adults who could legally drink in the group and further being told after enjoying a glass of vermouth that only 50-year-olds drink this, a trip to a fountain of youth could sound appealing.

So up the winding road we went searching for the town’s church. It was hot, it was steep, we were tired, we were hungry, but I was persevering; I wanted to reach this fountain (of water or oil aceite ??). Regardless if water or oil flowed from it, I was on a mission. Another steep incline and another before I saw a spire, yes! we were close. But alas, this church could not be accessed from the main road. It seemed to be only available to locals through secrets passageways and private yards. And even more disturbing, we could see all around the building without so much as a watering (oiling?) hole in sight.

As I made my way down the road, somewhat defeated, with an upset family in tow, my son says to me that maybe the fountain of youth is simply a story to make you hike up those hills in order to exercise and keep the body ‘young’. Well, that could definitely be so. Also, a sip from an unknown water source is really never a good idea, but this 40-something woman is still keen in finding… the waters of youth!

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