My Favorite Fountain

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By Peggy Jones

There are at least 45 street-side fountains scattered around San Miguel. At one time the fuentes were the water source for the households in each neighborhood, as evidenced by the grooves worn into the front. However, they are much more than that! Many years ago, a contributor to the Atencion wrote of the fountains, “They are the heart and nerve center, the gossip center, the place where romance blossoms. At times plots have been hatched around them. San Miguel can boast that it has a plethora of fountains, some are works of art, others purely utilitarian.” Most of these fountains are from the 19th and 20th century, but a few remain from the mid-1700s.

Fish, shells, Saints, urns, towers, and a mermaid enhance various fuentes, and they are named accordingly. My favorite is Fuente del Conde, The Count’s Fountain, on Sollono Street, just up from Correo. It is named after the Count of Loja, also known as Senor Francisco Jose de Landeta, whose home was across the street in the building that now houses the radio station. The face of the Count, with a ruffled collar, spouts water through his pursed lips. The little metal door in the back of the fountain is said to have allowed access to the water for the nuns who once lived there, without having to go out in public.

You can learn more about the fountains of San Miguel and so much more in this month’s Patronato Pro Ninos Architectural Walking Tour, Thursday, November 16. The 2 1/2 hour, mostly level walking tour meets at 9:45am, in the Jardin, in front of the Parroquia, and departs promptly at 10am. Donation for this tour is 350 pesos per person; no reservations are required. You will be led by knowledgeable volunteer guides, and best of all, you will be contributing to a great local cause!

These tours all benefit the good work of Patronato Pro Ninos, which for 47 years has been providing medical and dental services to underprivileged children of San Miguel and the surrounding rural communities.

Our group of expert volunteer guides also lead the Historical Walking Tours every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, same time, same place. Gather in the Jardin, in front of the Parroquia at 9:45am for a fascinating 2 1/2 hour tour of San Miguel history. Donation for this tour is 300 pesos per person and no reservations are required, although we appreciate advance notice of large groups. All tours are in English. Private tours can be arranged by contacting Lily at patronatoproninos.org. or calling 152 7796.

 

Tour

Architectural Walking Tour

Thu, Nov 16, 9:45am

Meet in the Jardin, across from the Parroquia

350 peso donation

Benefits Patronato Pro Niños

Every Mon, Wed, Fri: Historical Walking Tour, 300 pesos

 

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