Corona Lockdown Journal: Stay Positive – Setting Goals

Due to health issues and the fact we are approaching our winter years,  we decided to go into self-isolation on Friday 13th March several days before the Portuguese government declared a state of emergency and  'official' lockdown. We prepared well in advance thanks to our daughter who lives in France. She warned us what was... Continue Reading →

Garden Diary: February – Salad Crop, Potatoes, Confusion and a Rant Alert

While we've been enjoying beautiful weather we have followed storm Denis, which is ravaging parts of the UK, with horror. It certainly helps to put life into perspective when you see the devastation it has left in its wake. My thoughts are with you. This week's SOS focusses on the progress of my little horta... Continue Reading →

Poetry: “White Hot” by Carole Hill

I wrote this poem when I was in intense pain. In fact, so much pain it took my breath away. For those who have suffered/or who are suffering, I hope you can connect with this poem.

Flashes - Writers' Rendezvous

White Hot

by Carole Hill

Breath frozen
bloated mind
floats
seeking peace.

through icebergs of pain.

your smile numb in response
forced to bridge frozen wastelands
where laughter once played
and humour skied in your eyes
warms their polite concern.

white-hot iron leaves its mark.

About the author:

Carole Hill paints with words. Her artist’s palette coloured by the simple beauty of nature, environmental challenges and observations of her fellow man. When Carole is not writing, gardening or painting she can be found daydreaming on the beach as her thoughts are lost in the ocean waves, the distant horizon and beyond.

Carole’s poetry has been published in the Algarve’s travel magazine and Passages anthology.

Carole’s Blog:

https://pigletinportugal.com/

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How Can WE the Consumer Help to Reduce Single-use Plastics?

After watching several TV and Youtube documentaries on marine plastic pollution and the devastating impact on marine life, I decided to seriously review our plastic usage and recycling efforts, especially single-use plastics. https://www.facebook.com/lessplasticpt/videos/463573210817100/ One of the most alarming facts to emerge from these documentaries is that plastic breaks down into tiny pieces (microplastics) which then... Continue Reading →

The Ugly Bug Spring Jive

This poem is dedicated to the wonderful selection of insects we have in our garden.

Piglet in Portugal

The Ugly Bug Spring Jive
by PiP

With the Herald of Spring the bugs start to arrive
in my Garden of Eden for the “Ugly Bug Jive”.

The weird and the ugly they give me the jitters
who may I ask created these critters?

There are black bugs and green bugs and stripey ones too
perhaps they’ve escaped from the Ugly Bug zoo?.

Grasshoppers and spiders arrive at my door
the Jive’s in full swing so they take to the floor.

The Ugly Bug Jive is now the “In” thing
and a great way to cheer, the arrival of Spring.

The birds, snakes and lizards come looking for lunch
The “Ugly Bug” guests look an appetising bunch…

hmmmmm

Gobble gobble!

What's on the menu today? What’s on the menu today?

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Bolo Rei – A symbol of the Christmas season in Portugal!

A taste of Portuguese Christmas. Secretly, I still prefer mince pies, Christmas pudding and good old fashioned Christmas cake.

Piglet in Portugal

Fascinated by this cake I decided not only to buy one but also research its origins.

Bolo Rei - a true symbol of the Christmas season

Bolo Rei is not simply a cake but a true symbol of the Christmas season!

The Bolo Rei (King Cake) originated in France and only arrived in Portugal during the mid nineteenthcentury. It is traditionally eaten on the 25th December (Nativity) and the 6th of January (Epithany). However, the cake is so popular that it is on sale from the end of November through to the Epithany. The bread-like cake is round with a hole in the centre like a crown and decorated with candied fruits and nuts to symbolize the gifts offered by the Magi. The Magi were the wise men who followed the star from the east to worship baby Jesus in Bethlehem. They were later referred to by the Church, as Kings. Hence Bolo Rei.

Inside the Bolo Rei are nuts…

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Weekly Smile: Christmas Lights and Roses

This week we have had glorious sunshine so I've chillaxed by pottering/working in the garden, mosaicing and writing poetry. On Friday evening we ventured into Lagos to see the Christmas lights, which was great as for several years austerity measures meant there was no money for street decorations. Unfortunately, I forgot my camera so the... Continue Reading →

Learning the Lingo!

Learning Portuguese
Learning Portuguese

Piglet in Portugal

Learn the “Lingo” or live life in an “Expat Bubble”!

I am a great advocate of the fact that when you move to a new country you ‘attempt’ to gain, at the very least, a basic understanding of both language and culture. Without this ‘basic’ knowledge so much of everyday life and cultural opportunities are lost, and you effectively live a parallel existence in your new environment; there in body but not quite in mind. You still watch English TV, read English Newspapers and mainly interact with your fellow compatriots or those who speak English.

I accept, everyone is not a natural linguist and I certainly do not fall into that category – far from it! Despite years of studying Portuguese very little has permeated the grey matter and words just float aimlessly in my memory in disjointed sentences. However, on a positive note, I now often read a Portuguese…

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Pet Peeve: Able-Bodied People Parking in Disabled Bays

There is a new addition to the disabled and mother and baby parking bays. Or maybe it's always been there and I've never noticed. There  is now designated parking close to the entrance of the store for people with walking disabilities. (At least that is what I think the sign means). Fourteen months after injuring... Continue Reading →

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