Portuguese SAGAS – Day 10 and 11 on holiday

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11th of May 2018

Another day and another adventure ahead, or is it?

This is my 11th day on holiday and it has been great so far. Now I have experienced how it is to live in the north and just as expected I like it a lot. Maybe it is colder but that is ok. My new house will be a woodhouse and with proper insulation, not the polypropylene they are covering the houses everywhere these days. I can´t imagine that is a good idea. What about houses breathing? How do they breath through all this white plastic?

No, I prefer the old fashioned wonderful rock wool that was in my house in Iceland.

Yesterday was a warm day and sunshine all day long. 25 degrees is not bad and I even took off my cardigan!

I went to Viseu in the afternoon to have lunch. Driving 25 minutes just to get lunch is of course madness but there is always exciting to see and experience.

Viseu as many other places in Portugal have an interesting history.

The origins of the city extends to proto-history, when migrating groups settled the territory, including the Celts and Lusitanians. Roman colonists settled in this territories during eras of prosperity and peace, leading eventually to Suebics, Goths and Muslim cultures. The Suebic peoples, by the middle of the 6th century, had already an established community, with a bishop that existed as the suffrage of Braga. With the arrival of north African Muslims, the Visigoths escaped the territory and refuged in the distant mountains of Asturias.

There are so many things I find interesting about the city. Not many traffic lights and everything goes smoothly with roundabouts. On a sunny day like yesterday afternoon the traffic is fast but they do respect the zebra crossing, or at least most of the drivers.

As normal for me I park my car far away from my destiny and walk. The Portuguese trend is to park as close to your destination as possible. I consider this habit of mine to help me keeping fit and not gaining too much weight, although I am a bit worried about the extra kilos I accumulated during the months I had the flu. It will be a task to get rid of them when I move back to my apartment in Penela but that is for another day.

Many people who move abroad to live continue to call home the country or the place where they were born.

I don´t, I adjust, now home is Portugal and before that it was China. I never say home if I talk about Iceland.

This month I live in Casa da Fragas in the north and that is my home and I say “I’m going home” when I am for example in Viseu, as yesterday and going back to Beijós. Home is always the place where I live at the moment and this to me means to live in the moment!

Back to the trip to Viseu yesterday. I needed something to eat. I was hungry, really hungry and afraid I would collapse, which would not be good, being faraway from people I know.

The moll I went to is the first big one when I arrive to Viseu. I have been there many times and there are 2 of my favourite shops in the country. Not clothes shops. No, they sell art, porcelain, all kind of glass art and it feels like I am in my beloved China when in those 2 shops. Every time I go there and breathe in the beauty I go out happier and with this wonderful feeling in my heart that true art gives me.

The lunch I got was a surprise. So many restaurants on the top floor. This time I saw a new one and discovered something I had no idea existed, a smoked salted codfish. Can you believe it? I found it unbelievable and decided to try. The cook told me it would be nice. I believed him and ordered the Bacalau fumado with salad and water to drink. The cook told me it would take about 5 minute to make my dish. No problem.

I sat down and took the salad and water with me, I was starving I there was no way I was going to faint in front of those wonderful people. Eating my salad and waiting for the surprise I thought “I have to invite my friend here, I am sure she has not tried this”

Since I was hungry, starving, I did not take any pictures, not this time.

The smoked salted codfish arrived. It looked yammy!

I took the first bite, The cook and the girl looked at me.

OH, this was soooooo yammy.

The cook came over to me and asked if I liked it.

Oh yes I do, I told him, this is amazing.

We had a conversation about the fish and he told me he had just started in the restaurant, I mean the cook told me, not the fish. I don´t have conversation with my food, or at least not all the time!

I tried to explain to the cook where I am staying and he did not have a clue where the place is. People have problems understanding my pronunciation of Beijós. It is the J that is the problem. I can´t make it correct.

Yesterday I also tried to pay my gas bill. Not possible. The machine did not work. Now the bill is 150 EUR but next month in will be almost nothing. Surprise surprise for the gasmen who I really don´t like. I liked the old company but this new one is not my favourite but who cares, I will move soon.

Today is day 11 of my holiday. It is cloudy in the morning and rather cold. The sun will shine later today but guess what, tomorrow will be 14 degrees, and yes I said 14 degrees during the day. Just as well that I brought winter clothes with me. The warmth will come again and summer clothes on my body again.

The weather cannot decide how to behave, it´s almost as confused as I am.

See you later and this is it for today.

Hulda Björnsdóttir

Portuguese SAGAS – Day 8 and 9 – Where did all the men come from?

10th of May 2018

Good morning.

A beautiful day even though it is cold in the morning. The sun is already shining and makes the difference.

Yesterday I went to Penela just to water the flowers and take care of some practical things. My singing teacher was sick so there was no class but that is ok. There will be another day.

It was a good idea to take this holiday.

Now I have a better idea how it is to live here in the north and I do like it.

I look forward to go home in June and sleep in my own bed. Sleeping in a bed that is not mine with a mattress that is killing my back is something I would not like to do for more than a month. Tossing and turning during the night trying to find some spot that is different is confusing.

Waking up in the morning looking out of the window seeing the wonderful birds sitting on the balustrade showing off their beauty is worth the tossing and turning.

There is one bird with blue wings who was running around this morning and another joined, a little one with black wings, and they waltzed like they were saying good morning to the strange lady looking out of the window.

Usually there is peace and quiet where I stay now. Of course there are guests and some of them make more noise than others but that is normal. I had a family with 3 children in next house for few days. They took over the entrance hall and now the solution has been found. My table has moved. It is close to my balcony door and no one is going to move that one!

Well, even though the peace and quiet something happened last Tuesday evening. I was watching the beautiful sunshine, which is unbelievable, and suddenly some men arrived. A smoke rose from the grill area and more men came.

What was going on?

One of the guests had most likely decided to make a grill party with his friends.

More men came.

I counted 15, then I stopped counting but they came like flowing water. Some by cars, others by scooters, some in blue and others in read.

What was happening?

I looked the doors and the windows.

When someone walked by my bedroom window and around the house I was not at ease.

For an evening the peace and quiet had left but has arrived again.

And, this episode convinced me that I would not want to live in a house somewhere in the woods faraway from everyone. I want to live close to the people and feel safe.

This was the night when Eurovision was on.

I did watch it; felt it was my responsibility because it is held here in my land.

I have not watched this competition for many many many years and had totally forgotten how boring it is! Since the competition is in my country I have to watch again on Saturday, the final day. I just hope Portugal will not win again. I could not bear to have to watch this next year.

There was an Icelandic song but I turned on the TV late and did not see it, although I have tried to listen to the song before. The singer is young, smiling, happy with everything. He has a great voice but did not get into next part which is on Saturday. I did not like the song but that is ok. I don´t live in the country anymore and something like this is not of any interest for me.

It though struck me how horrible it would be if the song would for example win. That would be a disaster. Just imagine all the money spent on a competition like this?

Today is the 10th day of my holiday.

I have not decided how to spend it. Most likely I will just be working on my computer and singing a bit. Even though there are no classes the voice needs nourishing and recovering after the many weeks of the flue is complicated but I am getting there. The low notes are still rusty but I am optimistic.

I did change my bedclothes this morning and that has been my morning exercise so far!

More to come either later today or tomorrow.

The excitement is not to have a plan, just go with the flow.

Enjoy your day, wherever you are and remember to respect your age. Your age is just a number. I have suddenly realised that I have to calculate how many years I have got in my bag. In 12 days I will have another number but that is all which changes.

Hulda Björnsdóttir

 

Portuguese SAGAS – day 7 – the beauty in the destruction

7th of May 2018

It´s evening again. A beautiful one and the weather has been truly great, sunshine and then a bit of thunderstorms and rain, not much.

I was thinking about the fires, the burned trees, and the climate in my land this summer and about the people who are everywhere cutting and cleaning last years horror.

There is so much to cut and clean. You drive 5 minutes and there the emptiness appears or the disaster. Black trees or no trees at all where they have been removed. There are stacks of cut ones all around, everywhere. Some of them will be used for keeping the houses warm next winter.

There are branches and leaves to be burnet.

On the other side of the road I walked this morning there is a farm with lots of grapevines. The man was working in the field; I do call it a field, taking care of the trees. They are getting greener these days but during the winter they are naked and a bit ugly!

We did talk a bit, me and the man, not me and the grapevine. It was getting hotter and I was in hurry to get back before the worst heat. I even had a hat on and kept it on during my whole walk!

Taking care of the vineyard is a huge work and it never ends. The grapes will eventually end up in a bottle on some ones table, making the drinker happy. Next year everything starts over again and this goes on and on forever.

Being a farmer in my land is a hard work.

On the other side of the road there are trees that need cutting. This morning 3 men working hard and cleaning the land by cutting trees, those 3 have been there since I arrived 7 days ago.

I went into the wood, just to get the feeling, and looking ahead exploring what was in hiding between the trees.

I love the moss, it is beautiful and wherever I looked this morning I saw art among the trees. Just nature at its best.

We need to pause, look around, and breathe in the beauty. Even a cut tree is in a way full of beauty.

Please look at the photos I have put in this blog. They speak louder than words.

Sit down and imagine how my little land will look when all the trees have been burned and there is just waist land. Imagine how hot it will be. Imagine how the green becomes black, humans and animals will suffer, nothing will be the same. All green will disappear if we have another summer like the last one. We need a miracle. We need the authorities to take action and make sure that there won’t be a repetition from last year.

Driving through the villages there is destruction everywhere. I have not been to one, not even one, village where there is no damage from last year.

Imagine the tourists, will they keep coming when the green has disappeared and the heat is soaring?

I have to admit that I am worried. The devastation is that most of the fires last year were manmade, controlled by greed.

How sad is that!

Tomorrow is day 8 of my wonderful holiday. I will go to Viseu. The adventure continues. Making the most of every day in peace and quiet is the goal.

I don´t travel during the summer. The immigrants arrive and the tourists as well. The traffic is monstrous and the heat will be unbearable this summer, at least here in the centre and north part of my little and wonderful land.

I have been sharing with you the devastation but below I want to show you the beauty of this evening.

 

Hulda Björnsdóttir

 

Portuguese SAGAS – day 6 – Thunderstorms and sunshine

 

6th of May 2017

Good evening.

It is six o’clock in the evening.

A beautiful day with sunshine and warmth until this evening, when the thunderstorms began shouting and part of the sky was dark but the other one just beautiful as earlier today.

I hate thunders.

Thunders make me scared.

Well I even managed to get into a dress this morning, not that I have not been dressing these 5 days but today it was a summer dress, bare shoulders and legs. The first day like this in the new spring but I have to admit that in the afternoon I had to find lot of warm layers to put on!

I was told that my arms had even become a little bit pink, not grey like they are usually! Me getting healthy brown suntan takes ages so pink is quite an accomplishment!

Walking in the morning was great, Sunday morning and almost no one around, peace and quiet, even more peaceful than usually.

You know every village has one mad man. This morning I met the one here in Beijós. He came walking towards me talking like he was on the phone. No, he was not on the phone, he had no phone, just talking to himself and seemed quite happy with his company.

(It is beginning to rain heavily, while I am writing. The thunderstorms payed off. The sun is still shining in one part of the sky but the other one is crying with heavy tears.)

Back to the madman of village! He asked if I was French, Italian, English and I told him not. I was not going to talk to him and he seemed happy suddenly bringing out a whistle and blew like there was no tomorrw.

I just kept walking, used to strange people or so to speak.

On my way I met a hen which was talking to another one inside the building. Now I know for sure there are hens living in the long ugly red building, but before I could get my camera from my rug sack, went inside. She did not care about some foreigner wanting to have photos of a white hen. I have also discovered where the food is kept and in my vivid imagination there is no problem seeing the food flowing down from the tank.

My God, I am happy I don´t eat chicken anymore!

When walking down the road I always notice something new. This morning I noticed there were statues in one of the gardens. Really old ones but beautiful. The contrast is strange. There are beautiful houses and then there are the ruins.

Some years ago I met a family from Holland and they had been traveling from Porto down to Lisboa. They told me they experienced Portugal as ruins and more ruins with newly built houses in between. This is I think correct in many cases and the first word I learned when moving here was “Ruinas” which means ruins. The taxi driver who drove me from Penela to Podentes, where I lived my first months in the country, taught me. Curvas, was the second one. Driving through the mountain was scary but I got used to all the sharp curves.

Yesterday I went to Tondela, just a quick drive to take care of some business which did not end too well, but I have been expecting the result I got, for 6 weeks. Now it is a new chapter. A new plan and a fresh decision to be made. Is there a plan B? I am not sure. All in good time.

(The rain is flowing, heavily now and its getting dark and the road like a river. Somehow I like the sound of the rain, it is kind of soothing.)

Back to the decorations in the gardens!

It’s not just the stone statues. There are all kinds of strange tools, some of them I do recognise from Iceland and even from China. I find it quite interesting to see how much the Portuguese value the past and perhaps it is more the older generation than the younger one.

Here in Casa da Fragas there is a lot of all kinds of old tools on display. The owner brings them here and keeps the heritage alive.

Tomorrow is Monday; a new week begins with new adventures. The forecast is warm with sunshine and rain, perhaps just like today. My morning walk will hopefully be in sunshine.

I have to tell you about the dog. He is going to Algarve and will find a new family there. I will miss him but this is for the best.

He is homeless and cannot be here barking at strangers, taking care of those who stay here. I don´t understand how people can just stop their cars and let the animals out and leaving them out in the wilderness. It is so cruel. I am told that this is common here in my land and perhaps it is like that everywhere. People give pets for Christmas presents and then suddenly they realise that the animals need care and they are not just cute little ones for décor. It should be forbidden to buy animals before Christmas.

So day 6 is almost over and day 7 ahead. The holiday will be over before I know it but it has, so far, been wonderful, peace and quiet with new adventures every day. This morning I was looking at the wild flowers alongside the road. They are so beautiful even though they are kind of a weed and not welcome. There they are shining and trying to make us notice them and stop and admire the colours and the shape. How can you pass them without saying good morning?

After the showers, the heavy ones just now, everything is sharp green. The beauty of the rain is in the colours.

I could do without the thunderstorms but that’s ok. I will put the duvet over my head when in bed and keep the water bottle close to me!

See you tomorrow.

Hulda Björnsdóttir

Portuguese SAGAS – day 4 – holiday – The nice people

4th of May 2018

Good morning

Yesterday was a day of adventures, amazing and beautiful.

In the afternoon I took a walk towards the village

As I have shown you before there are interesting things to see on the way and yesterday I met some wonderful people.

The truck in the photo above is one among many hundreds, transferring the cut burned trees to somewhere. The disaster is everywhere.

In the neighbourhood there are big houses and now I know they are farms, side by side in harmony and love.

On my way down the road I met a man outside a house and the motorbike was running, a red beautiful bike purring like a cat. The owner stood outside his gate and looked at me. At the balcony there are huge flowers, beautiful ones and I have been admiring them on my previous walks. The house is grey and just ordinary but the flowers shining at the balcony make it special.

Opposite there was a huge pig inside a fence of course. Was the pig eating grass, I wondered.

The man smiled and asked me if I like the meat? I told him no.

He told me the house was his but the pig at the other side of the road did not belong to him. I admired his flowers and he smiled, told me the house was his, just an ordinary conversation here in Beijos. He asked me where I was from, if I was Dutch but no, I tried to explain I was Icelandic and that was truly complicated as always. They want to put me in Ireland. Of course I am used to this after 7 years and have found a solution.

Bacalau, Icelandia!

Oh, bacalau! and everyone smiles.

Here in my land we do talk a lot and repeat many many many times just to make sure we understand what we are talking about.

The man left and I walked on.

Further along the road there were 3 people talking. They were definitely collecting wood for the winter and had bags and a wheelbarrow, the wheelbarrow almost full of burnet cut trees. Along the road 2 young men have been pretending to clean, they do take a lot of brakes, but when passing them they suddenly become busy and the machines are working again!

When I approached the group I was out of breath and feeling a bit horrible. They asked me if I was ok and I told them had forgot my water and my heart was complaining. Just a normal situation and nothing to worry about, I told them.

One of the ladies went to her house and came back with a bottle of water. Drink, she told me.

After explaining where I was from and learning about their children in Australia, which they visit every year in December and January, we suddenly discovered that they did in fact speak English, or a little of it. Even though we continued our conversation in Portuguese because the 3rd one just spoke Portuguese.

Everyone knows about the resort I am staying at.

Everyone tells me how wonderful it is, and it is.

The 3rd one showed me where she lived and I always pass her house when taking a walk. She invited me to stop by when I was on my way somewhere. If you need anything you just ask, she told me and left.

The lady of the house we were standing next to, the big one, which was in fact a farm and they owned the huge pig I had been admiring before told me to come and see her house and the animals..

She took me into her farm, showed me the animals, 3 tiny pigs and a lot of chicken and 3 ducks plus some birds I have no idea who are. Then we went to the garden where they grow their vegetables and the grapevine. They make their vine and sell it. They grow vegetables and herbs in a greenhouse and everything is completely organic.

I got a salad and some herbs to take home with me. I have to tell you, uhm, so good.

There is a small house next to the big one. There was an elderly lady which the couple had taken in. She lives alone in Portugal and had spent the last night in the hospital. Living on her own, having health problems and her neighbours moved her into their spare house. How amazing is that.

The lady of the house took me to the sick one and we had a small talk. She told me what happened and showed me the bruises on her shoulder and arm. She had definitely fallen.

We spent some time with the sick lady and she told me how wonderful the couple was taking her in and lending her the house. There is a small living room, the phone next to the bed, a bathroom with a shower and a fireplace and a kitchen. Everything you need, she told me.

The love was obvious.

This reminded me of my life in China and the people living there in small apartments, sharing with everyone, a wonderful flashback.

Anyway, the lady of the house and her husband invited me to come by any time I was passing. We gave each other big hugs and kisses like it is normal to do in my little land.

The dog did not accompany me during this walk. Have no idea where he was but I met another one which was lost or had been abandoned.

I don´t understand how people can just open their car doors and let the dogs out when they don´t want them anymore. This is what happens and the poor things are totally lost. They try to find a new home but that is not easy. I am sure the one that takes care of everything here in Casa Da Fragas has been left like this. He is trying to make a new home here but that is not possible. They don´t allow dogs.

Yesterday  a man who did not live here came and the dog was furious.

He takes care of us, like we were his own.

This morning he came from somewhere and looked through my door, just to make sure everything was ok. So sweet!

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Eventually he will leave; he cannot stay here and bark. The guests’ don´t like it and the management does not want him here which is understandable. Soon he will find a new home and I will miss him. We have become friends even though I don´t feed him or show any affection but he understands that I do care.

This morning while I was singing he just lay outside and relaxed. Probably tired after the night.

So, this is more or less my afternoon yesterday and the beginning of the morning today. The guests, the others, went biking at 11 and I could sing, no one to disturb. I am slowly getting my voice back after almost 2 months of no singing. I have not decided what to do during the rest of the day. The wonderful peace and quiet is enough at moment. Maybe I will head somewhere later today. Being on a holiday and just living the moment is the top of the existence.

Next week I will go on Wednesday to Penela in the morning to pick up the post and water the flowers. Most likely I will have my first singing lesson in a long time and I am looking forward to it. After singing I will head back north and one more week of the same. What a life!

I have to tell you that the resort got 9, 6 approval rate last year. That is something and likely not many who get that high score.

Have a great day and I will write more tomorrow.

Hulda Björnsdóttir

Portuguese SAGAS – holiday, day 3

3rd of May 2018

Good morning. I wrote the first part yesterday and completely forgot to post it. Here you have my post for yesterday and todays morning.

2nd of May 2018

Good evening everyone.

The 2nd day of the holiday is there.

I slept well during the night even though there are some ghostly sounds around the house but I have been told there is nothing inside the roof, but who knows. Maybe the ancestors are visiting and having fun scaring the living. I don´t know but in the middle of the night the sounds seemed to quiet. Could it be that the ghosts need to rest just like us the living?

I woke up at 7 and the routine began. Water, stretching, washing and you know all the normal things. Making breakfast and trying to get a bit of warmth into the house by putting on air-condition.

I don´t like the sound but there is no fireplace so you just put up with the endless purr.

The dog came in the morning with the manager and followed her around while she distributed the fresh bread and some other things for breakfast. After following her he came to my door. I had opened the door to get some fresh air into my new home and there he was, just outside sitting like a gentleman. After a while he put one foot inside, just to test if the lady would invite him to her sofa.

No, go away, the lady hissed.

He left and probably thought; I will try again later today.

It is supposed to rain today and this morning it was 3 degrees outside, really cold but beautiful. The birds singing and the sound of the river like a morning meditation tune. Peace and quiet!

I love the sound of the nature and this is a perfect place to enjoy it and suck it in like a pure joy.

The ants are having a ball on the floor. I don´t know where they come from but I mixed for them powder sugar and bicarbonate and hope they will eat it and BUM the go happy to the ant’s heaven. Not a bad way to kill them, or what?

 

Day 3.

I wrote the first part yesterday but completely forgot to post it or even finish the post so here I am again.

A beautiful morning with sunshine and cold.

I did not rain yesterday. Not at all!

Today there might be 19 degrees and sunshine on and off but tomorrow and some days ahead it looks like 20 something with a wonderful sun and everything.

I and the dog took a walk yesterday morning, he has decided that it might be a good idea to take care of me and make sure I find my way back.

In the morning I thought he was a she but after the walk I knew he was a he. Tiny drops here are there marking our space proved the case.

We did walk for an hour. I found some landmarks to make sure I would find my way back. There are ruins all around the road we took and I found the post boxes interesting and here are some pictures of them.

The young men were cutting the trees and busy trying to fix the machine.

I met some Portuguese people and it feels good to bid them Bom Dia and see their surprise when the strange one starts talking in Portuguese.

A lady I was trying to talk to did not understand a word I spoke. I thing she just saw a tall foreigner and her brain did not manage to realize that the tall one was in fact saying Bom Dia. Eventually we managed. I admired her garden and she had some peculiar thing in her garden I was curious if it was working but impossible to figure that out.

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In the afternoon I decided to drive and try to find a supermarket. I needed food. I drove on, got lost, found my way again and payed in a bank my car insurance. Travelled a bit around the village, found a flower shop and got Lavender and rosemary to keep the mosquitos away from the house. Now I am becoming the flower girl.

On my way back I came across a supermarket and did my shopping. Brought back fruits and veggies plus Peru, no tuna in that shop and the cod fish section was empty, no one working there so I gave up.

My food the next days will be Peru!

I bought a box of strawberries and the box opened and spread the berries around my trolley! Seriously! What kind of boxes do behave like that?

I found my way home, easily.

Tired and hungry I ate the rest of the codfish eggs from yesterday with pasta and some fruits. You just take what is quick when you are tired.

Went to bed at half past eight and read a novel I have almost finished, The letter is the name of it, and I will be happy when that one is over.

I do have a book about Mr. Trump which might be on my reading list but have not decided yet. There is so much happening now in his life so maybe it is more relaxing to read something else in bed!

This is my day 2 and the beginning of day 3. Not sure what will happen today.

See you next time and enjoy whatever you are doing my reader.

Hulda Björnsdóttir

 

 

Portuguese SAGAS – Holiday – day 1 – 1st of May

1st of May 2018

Good evening everyone.

Day one is here.

I woke up early in the morning and left home at half past 8.

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Took the motorway and this was supposed to be a straight forward trip. I had already been to the place once before and how difficult could it be to find it again. I also had my wonderful GPS lady who would tell me where to go.

Oh yes, you thought so.

I drove through and looked at the burned trees, the wood in stacks and contemplated on last summer’s fires. It breaks my heart every time I go through the devastation. The houses just ruins and the question is if they will be built again.

Let me tell you for an hour I managed to do what I was supposed to do. I was good and obedient and my GPS was happy.

Then I came to Beijós and everything went awry.

Lady GPS told me I had arrived. I knew I had not. There should be signs. I saw one and drove on. I knew there should be more signs but did not see anything. Drove for about half an hour and came across a beautiful church which I knew had not seen before.

There was no doubt in my mind. I had to turn and start again.

I did go back to Beijós and drove carefully.

Yes the first sign was there, and then another, and the third one that said I love Dao – Casas da Fraga , 50 meters.

I drove one, hey this was the same road I had taken before and now I knew how far 50 meters are. There was no way I was going to make the same mistake again. No way!

Lucky me, there was a couple in their garden, I stopped and asked the man if I should drive ahead to my destination?

No, you should turn left, and he pointed back. I had missed the turn! My GPS knew but I have to change my attitude in the future and do what she tells me, all the time, not just sometimes.

So I arrived and now I recognised everything. There was though a dog which I had not seen before. He looked quite content and sunbathing while I waited for the manager.

It was a beautiful day and my day one of a month’s holiday had arrived. What more could I wish for?

The house is beautiful, I had seen it before and it has everything. Of course I have changed a thing or two, moved a chair and a table.

I brought my own pots and a pan and some food. My car was loaded but I will eat the food and slowly bring back the dirty laundry. I have to go to Penela once a week just to pick up the post and water the flowers. Nothing special, but the dirty laundry will travel with me and wait until I get home in June. Wonderful!

On my way I drove into a huge hole and the seat belt pushed me down, and my back is killing me. I will be ok tomorrow after good nights sleep.

I have already taken my first walk and explored a bit of the neighbourhood.

There is the grapevine which I always find rather ugly!

Then of course someone burning wood, that is ok if people are taking care of the fire and it does not spread.

The dog had found a group of youngsters but they were definitely not his owners and he came back.

During the day I had my doors open and the little one did not enter. He just lay down outside the door and waited.

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My friend, the manager, took me sightseeing; we needed to buy a lottery ticket. I saw the beautiful church again and we entered an interesting village. There is a lot to explore around and I am looking forward to it.

Since there are more people staying in the other houses I have to be careful and not practice singing while they are at home. I will figure it out. They cannot be home all the time. They have to explore and then I will practise. Did today before the new guests arrived but have to figure out something tomorrow. Maybe I will be spying on them just to be able to practise!

Well, as you know I am not normal and this will be an adventure, different from other guests.

I will go to bed early, have almost unpacked and found most of what I thought I needed!

Have a great time until tomorrow and enjoy everything that comes your way. There is nothing like the current moment.

Hulda Björnsdóttir