Seizing the day, being extraordinary, is it not the ‘holy grail’ that we are all looking for? Life is too precious and ephemeral not to do it.
But how many times, have we looked around and realized that we were surrounded by extraordinary people? Or that we were the descendants of those that were already seizing the day on a daily basis?
Well, on a personal perspective it took me a while to appreciate how adventurous Madeirans really are. It may not be skydiving, running with bulls or swimming with great whites, but day-to-day activities that are overlooked and are equally filled with adrenaline production.
The first sign of audacity of the Madeirans is noticed, as soon as the plane touches down; 981m of the airport runway is built on a platform over the ocean, supported by 180 pillars. Something that we could only expect from someone that sleeps on top of a volcano, right? But, then again, that’s what Madeirans do; the island is at the top of this colossal shield volcano, with a very irregular topography of mountains and vales.
When driving, they pass through bridges as high as 125m, tunnels crossing mountains or are led to Pico do Arieiro , where the car is literally above the clouds and the sunrises sunsets are to die for!
The man made irrigation aqueducts, with cliff edge location are visited daily by local agriculturalists and hikers, going through an exciting journey with access to the most incredible landscapes.
Places where human access may seem impossible are filled with vegetable plots or houses, nothing uncommon for people that bathe on lava rock beaches and are aware of what it is like to have a foot caught by a rolling rock when entering the ocean. These are the same people that spend a great part of their lives celebrating and, that since tender age have held hand fireworks foguetes in New Years’ Eve, such a big health & safety no no!; not forgetting that at least once in their lives they have descend the Monte in a wicker toboggan with no seatbelts or brakes, but with grease on its base and facing traffic flowing in the opposite direction.
Nowadays, these incessant Madeirans look for further adrenaline thrills by canyoning, zorbing and surfing.
In Madeira ‘That’s how we roll’