Thursday, October 24, 2013

Autumn rain, a time of changes....

It's raining, it's pouring, the old man is snoring!!  4 inches - oops, 10 cm - in the last 5 hours and still going strong.....  marvellous stuff!   Ok, we had some a month ago but then summer again since. I have the French doors open next to me to see the little waterfall coming down the drainage channel off the hillside - heaven! Now I can start digging swales!!!

Anyway, the Indian summer's been pretty good - for drying more figs and chillies and getting the last grapes sweet, and going to the beach.  All good stuff - Tudo bem.....

Here is a psychadelic selection of a few of our chillies - we have them coming out of our ears!...


The chickens have their promised land...


And PEOPLE....   The seasons bring the changes with the human energy of the Várzea as well - it has never been otherwise.   The summer personnel staying here, Jim and Dan, have moved on on their paths, and we have, for the winter in the two apartments, 


Mafalda with her two boys, Divino and Adão.....  


... Mafalda is a wonderfully resourceful woman, and an awesome picker of Medronho berries!

And now Tiago and Ana, with their nearly-two-year-old son Namoh...



 Tiago is a multi-talented musician, playing a whole selection of exotic instruments... 



.... seen here are: ngoni, balafon, space-drum (playing), djembe, dun-duns, cajon, berimbau, kalimba, and a wonderful telescopic didgereedoo - see if you can identify!

Ana teaches African Dance, and we have a class every Thursday evening, to accompany the Várzea's community night - when the childrens' film is now followed by a musical evening in place of the documentary film.  The "Pit" will be alive with music and fire.  

Big month for re-planting the vegetable garden with winter crops. We've had our first consignment of organic seeds to back up our own saved seeds - it is a big garden to fill but Tiago loves gardening and Mifalda lends a hand too.  The plan is to turn a big section over to perennials and fruit bushes, and plant the rest nice and thick - the soil is in excellent condition in most of the garden now, and production can be massively increased!

And for one week only we have guests from Scotland....


... exploring life in a different out-of-the-way place in Europe several times a year - good to see people who have good tastes in holidaying!!

Finally - a nice story:  An oldish Portuguese lady, paid us a visit a while back - she was quite emotional as she introduced herself as Dona Alzira - she had been born here and lived here for the first 23 years of her life! She had not visited Várzea da Gonçala for over 20 years - she is 70 now - because she was afraid that she would find the place neglected or abandoned.  Last week she came back to visit with here sister who now lives in Lisboa.  Lovely people - Dona Alzira is on the right....


... it was wonderful to be able to talk about how things were, here, over 60 years ago, in a whole different era.

Thursday is upon us again, so got to get the wood ready and the Pit cleared.....


2 comments:

  1. Good to read you !!! The farm seems full of life! I miss my time there... Good ideas for the garden, make it more permanent but keep things growing in, even green manure if you don\t have nothing to put in a bed... The rain will compact the soil.. and more diversity !!! I'm learning a lot here in India, i would have done the garden in a different way now... Gaia's garden book seems really useful ! Lot of love and hugs Chris! Keep going with your incredible energy, don't work too much as well ! Take time to breathe! Jade

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  2. I'm in Lagoa, Algarve and love the good permacultura ideas. Good to read you. Here, I have seeds to share... can i have some of your chillies seeds? Sorry my inglish is very bad!!

    BIA

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