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Saturday, 14 November 2015

Cowardly acts

Only when I turned on  the news early this morning,  did I see what horror and pain and  suffering, that the so called 'Isis' inflicted on the  innocent people of Paris.  
What more can the people of Europe do to help the influx of refugees from the devestation that 'Isis has inflicted' on their own people, within their own countries. We have given them everything.   I do not care to write about bad things.  Its a big world out there, and we must all be able to get along with one another.   
For me, this morning my mood changed.  This cowardly act has hit me hard.  The face of Europe is changing and at a fast pace too.  Is there no stopping these cowards , because that is what I call them. 

I lit a candle .. It truly was a black Friday the 13th.    France , a country that is for ..freedom and liberty.
All nationalities under their canopy.    

 There is so much I would like to write about.. but think it not appropriate for the internet.
My views on European law, are changing and as from today, will change even more.

 A rose for the people of Paris..  

No comments..

Monday, 2 November 2015

Its been raining now heavily for a week, with a few hours of respite in between. No complaints, its needed.    I went for a quick walk down the path, with the dogs.  Winter is on its way. When it rains and november arrives , we can get some colder days.  I ordered a ton of wood for the wood burner, should come before the weekend.  I have not had any heating on since April , more or less.  I have turned it on now for this evening.  
The sky is heavy and laying low.  Rain clouds over head.  Its damp and wet. 
A night for watching a good movie, and cuddling up with a blanket . 
Weather man says, that we might get some sun more towards weekend. 

                                            Getting the outside furniture, ready for storage.
                                                   All the bushes are growing like mad.
                                               The olive trees  are laden.  I always feel sad during these days.. as no one wants to pick olives any more.  It is a back breaking job.  In some ways, the common market is not a good thing.!!  I just have to let them fall , hoping the birds and little night animals will eat them.  I usually have had a batter exchange going.. but no one interested.
          The pastures are getting much greener with more foliage.. The horses are happy with their daily showers.
                                                            overgrowing, somehow I like it.
                                               Kept this little pink Gerda cut smaller this season..and its bloomed. They bloom all year around.   I hope its Gerda..!  someone told me it was. I am hopeless with the names of flowers.
              Except this one.   I still have buds blooming.  Changing my vases every 3 days with fresh cut ones.
Life goes on the same here at Quintinha das Rosas.   Its time for making plans and finishing others.
Having a house and garden, there is always something that one wants to add or change.
Its going dark now.
Time to wish you all a very good evening and a happy week.

Thank you for all your kind comments on my last post.

Val ,,,,,,,,,,,,,

Thursday, 22 October 2015


I took the back road to the big supermarket yesterday In our next village 6k away from the Quinta.
  On my way out, I took my camera with me.  Like we all say, "Just in case"..

It was the most beautiful Autumn morning, just as it is today. The sun was shining, I had a cardigan on that I had to take off, as it became warm with the sun beaming through the car window. I felt good and happy and thankful for all the lovely things around us, that go to making a perfect day.
  Knowing i was going the back road, I thought I might just see something interesting, i kept the camera on the passenger seat next to me.. for quick access.
I always take the same route once in the village.. its the next village to mine. It has two larger super markets, where I go every once in a while .

By now, those of you who follow me, know that  I live in a rural agricultural area. With farms that have  vast hectares of land. Old little villages, with their winding cobbled  streets and houses painted diligently every spring with snow white  'Cal'- lime wash. Its the Ladies of the village that paint their outside facade of their village homes.. an age old tradition.  Its always at the beginning of Spring.  Passing by, you can see the smiles and hear their chit chat , exchanging how each one paints and does her very best.

 Every time I drive that route.. I say to myself " that wasn't there before"- yet its been there for hundreds of years.
That's the beauty of living in the country.  Our eyes catch a glimpse of something new.
 I stopped here yesterday, at the street entrance short cut I take to the supermarket.   How this old little street could tell a thousand tales.  Families who have lived here , grandparents , mother ,father ,children and grandchildren, great grandchildren.  When visiting the cemetery , you can see some of their names that go back over the years.
I finished my shopping, having said hello to some of the girls, that I had not seen for months. Country folk are always happy.    I took the same back road home again. Stopping along the way seeing different trees and little houses that i had not seen before.  Isnt that amazing...after all these years.!

 Old Cork Oak trees, that can tell us many stories too, standing like statues in the newly ploughed fields.

  Old Olive trees that had twisted into strange shapes over the years .. maybe god's way of giving a little cover to the wild animals of the night.
                              Old   walls.. what can they tell us.

                                                     The old milestone still used as reference, although we have nice new ones on the main roads.. its nice to see these old ones .. takes you back to the time of when we used to read a map to find out if we were on the right road.. now its new technology.. who would have known a hundred years ago, what GPS meant. Probably even today, the old villagers don't know what it is.
 The story here of this photo.. This is the ' Wolfman's home'- ( lobeshomem)  Yes, he does exist.  When I first heard the story years ago.. I thought the village people were playing a hoax.  He only comes out.. No ! not when the moon is out.! but maybe once a month.  He truly looks like a wolf.  You can hardly see his eyes for his eyebrows have grown over them. His hair is thick long and grey. He is a loner and wishes to remain that way.  He rides his bike into the village and rides back.  He lives up on this hill all alone.
                                              What memories does this old home hold.. its over a hundred years old.
                                  Old gate entrances.. leading up to hidden farm houses within the Olive and Cork fields.. I stopped here, and wondered who it was that lived up here.!
               You will find these little 'Cantoneira' houses all over Portugal.  They are not much in use any more.  Its for the men who used to clear the bermas..(ditches) a well respected man back many years ago.. for he kept the ditches free of leaves , dead animals and the sorts. Working on a rotation system.. weeks at a time. This is where they would sleep, until the next man came.  The municipality and the folk around keep them neatly painted. They still belong to the government.  Now maybe for tools and so on.  This one is up the road from me.
 Look carefully- high upon the hill is an old ruin.  Its called the haunted house.  I found out some time ago, that it was called haunted, because the lovers would go up there.. so their parents wouldn't find out.. they were sure not to go there as it was haunted.. 50 years ago, a girl could not be alone without a chaperone ..What tales can this old place tell.!!

We all need a sense of belonging.  I left my hometown with my parents at a very early age of 8.. and travelled to darkest Africa. Travelled here and travelled, there. Sailed here and sailed there.
But, its here in these beautiful Alentejo surroundings , that I have found my sense of belonging.
As I type, the horses are neighing ,the dogs are barking at the birds twittering about the garden, the sun is shining, the flowers blooming.   I am home.

                          VAL *****

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Tuesday morning ,garden at the Quinta.

Its the most beautiful Autumn October morn here in my part of the world.    We have had a week of the most welcomed rain, ever so much needed to fill our dams and water supply .  For the farmers and the crops, the livestock , rivers .. Its wonderful.  Such a change from the scorching heat of the summer months , that seem to go on for ever.
Walking around my inner garden, I thought how lucky I am to be here in my little paradise. The flowers and trees are bursting with life.   Its rained, but we have had warm hours during the day.
The Olive trees are swaying with a very light warm breeze.  The skies are blue ,with some clouds.
There is so much more to observe during Autumn.. I do believe, that its my most favorite of seasons.
I have been working on my garden now for 12 years.  Its really giving me such satisfaction .  In a way, I am sorry that I didnt plant more oleanders around the fences.  They are still giving some amazing blooms.
The pastures are beginning to turn green.  Such a welcoming sight to see.
The Olives are turning black on most of the trees.  Not sure if I will be battering this season.!  The trees need a good pruning .   It will also provide me with wood for the winter.

  9.15am..  the haze was still around.  Its now lifted, and looks like a nice day is with us.
      After all the heavy downpours , My roses are standing strong . They have grown taller this year, due to the feed that I give them.
                                    Jeffrey and Hardy- They follow me everywhere..such faithful companions. sniffing the ground to see if there are any lizards they can catch.   So pleased with my palm trees . They are growing taller each year.  These trees next to the pool, I planted about 5 years ago.
                      This is a beautiful creepeer - bright red.  I need to make a trellis for it to creep up.  They like it in the wooden boxes, I bought from the garden shop. I put white stones around the pot.  Most have the plants have been happier this year.  You might remember , I mentioned in a post, that Pedro had put the drip system back working.  What a difference.

                                Good morning mummy-  When do we get our rations.  Surprise , Pascoa and Venus.. they love a little chat in the early morning.  They are giving me a little smile.. Horses are very sociable animals.  Last week, I had to give Surprise a whack on her nose.  I was giving her some apple and she nipped me.  Many of you who have been following me,will know how naughty Surprise is. She teases me. Pascoa, turned 22 this year.
 The pepper trees are overloaded...drooping under the heaviness of the peppers. My D.I.L  Heleen, was here a couple of weeks ago.. she picked loads of them to put together with the black pepper corns in her grinders at the Hotel.
                                                           Palms and pepper trees
                                            Hard work, getting this creeper to creep up the fence.. but its starting. It seems to want to grow along the ground.  Another project to attack.
                                               Olives  ready next month.
                                                        The sky at 9.15am - At the moment am in Olive Cottage .. its cosy during these Autumn days.   I will move back into  Rose Cottage, when the guests have gone.  I have the fishermen here at the moment.   Its their 3rd year now.  They love it and catch lots of fish.. for sport.. they dont kill them or eat them.

                                                   So surprised  this little  fuschia is giving these gorgeous light pink and lilac blooms.

Thank you dear Blogging friends who follow me, for all your kind comments that you leave.. and thank you for taking the time to read my posts.

Wishing you all a happy day , full of happiness and good health.