By Inge Perreault e-mail Inge at firstname.lastname@example.org
Azores Journal 1
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The Move and the Portuguese Lethal Weapon."
||Spring has sprung in the Azores and the deciduous trees are
showing their splendour along with a new crop of flowers which either had taken a break or
whose time it is to shine, such as giant blue alum, a great variety of daisies and
tropical flowers the name of which I am unable to pronounce or remember. Something is
blossoming someplace all the time there seems no end to the variety of species.
Even pesky weeds have beautiful blossoms!
Though the container is still in Terciera en route to Ponta Delgada, my husband returned from the States with some of our personal belongings so that we are now using our own cook- and dinner-ware plus we purchased some items here that were not cost-effective to transport such a distance.
||Our new landlord, the son of our first landlord, is most congenial and
helpful in more ways than I can count. He knows the place he once lived in himself is in
good hands. While the move itself was not all that exhausting and my husband all too happy
to return to Sao Miguel after experiencing New England in Feb. and March with snow, sleet
and FREEZING temperatures, we made some most amusing experiences fitting so well into the
Azorean life-style and character. Unpredictable is the word that comes to mind!
We had tried to arrange for the deliveries of purchased items from two different sources on the same day and requested our phone line and Internet connection to be moved, following the instructions of ordering same one week prior to the actual move and installation..
The sofas, shelving systems and the PC desk
were assured to be delivered at 10.30 a.m. on a Friday while the refrigerator, gas-range
and mold-resistant Sisal rugs should have arrived at 11.30 a.m. The emphasis here is on
SHOULD. Sapo pt, the telephone and Internet Co., had told us the lines would be switched
on Monday of the following week. We were just having breakfast at 9 a.m. when there was a
knock at the door. Lo and behold the sofas, shelves and the PC desk had arrived early.
Since we were just moving next door my husband directed them accepting delivery and no
sooner than 20 minutes later the delivery of the other items scheduled for 11.30 a.m.
arrived. Isnt this interesting? Daily surprises await you when you just got used to
the life according to amanha (tomorrow or whenever)!
||As mentioned this is not due to male machismo either, women are just as DRIVEN once behind the wheel of a car and cellularphonitis, the obsessive use of mobile phones has reached new heights in this part of Europe. It is still an enigma to me what is being talked about constantly going for simplicity and minimalism we decided against handy ownership at this point. One important item that is highly commendable in the driving habits is the fact that by law pedestrians ALWAYS have the right of way. There are clearly marked pedestrian crossings and lightening surely would strike the person who would dare NOT to stop for a pedestrian. Public transportation is very much available and never before have I seen such modern and HUGE buses as here, manoeuvring the often problematic terrain. They are on time and used regularly.|
|Actually I am amazed how many Azoreans of the younger
generation do not even know how to drive and prefer a leisurely bus-ride.
This being an island so far removed from the European continent, gasoline is very expensive and though a fair amount of BMWs, Mercedes and other expensive European cars can be seen, more and more people are opting for smaller diesel or electric cars. The cutest Smarts and other tiny brands of mini-cars that seem like toys to American eyes zip about, especially in cities like Ponta Delgada or Ribeira Grande.
||They come in an array of adorable colours, some with sunroofs or even as
convertibles. The perfect vehicle for short distances, narrow roads, tight parking spaces
and two people. Should we wear out the used car we purchased, thats what I want
Our exploring has been somewhat affected by the move but we did visit the Cha (tea) factories/farms in Porto Formosa and Gorreana, founded around 1820 and the green tea grown here is delicious. We admired not only the view but visited a type of museum showing the old machines for sorting the tea leaves as well as many photographs from days gone by. After that we sampled some Cha and washed down some home-made sconces that were delicious. The teas come in different strength, we chose the middle one.
|Our exploring has been somewhat affected by the move but we
did visit the Cha (tea) factories/farms in Porto Formosa and Gorreana, founded around 1820
and the green tea grown here is delicious. We admired not only the view but visited a type
of museum showing the old machines for sorting the tea leaves as well as many photographs
from days gone by. After that we sampled some Cha and washed down some home-made sconces
that were delicious. The teas come in different strength, we chose the middle one.
Likewise we took part in preparing a carpet made from flower petals picked by us freshly that morning in Furnas for a religious procession at the lovely Casa das
Camelias, owned by a British lady who has lived on Sao Miguel for I believe 30 years.
No doubt our design was the best one as a walk through town admiring some of the others
proved to us. But we worked hard at it with great zest and gathered for a wonderful meal
after the procession had passed.
Tumbleweed Journal" Copyright
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