19 September 2007

"nEiGhBoRs aRe mOrE tHaN fAmiLy..."


these were the words of one of our neighbors, Adelina... she's amazing!!! she lives in the village and has her land next to ours where everyday she goes to water her wonderful garden... she often gives us the fruits of her labor :-) and she's always giving us good tips on how to plant our own things... she's alone, well, her kids don't live with her anymore... her husband left her many years ago with 3 kids to raise, between 8 and 12 years old...she had to work a lot she said, to be able to raise her kids...but proudly she said that they missed nothing and they never got themselves into big troubles ...now she finds herself alone as they all went away to work abroad... this is just one of many stories of the people of Povoa de Atalaia... but they mostly sound the same... loneliness is all they have left after a whole life of labor in this land...
Tia (Aunt) Adelina says she's really glad we are living here and she's even considering moving from the village to her land :-) ... so sweet... she even said that she's sorry that many of those who come don't speak portuguese, otherwise we could just become a big community there, with ours and her land :-) isn't that a cool idea !!! Who knows !!!
Me and Emma went in the morning to Tia Adelina to watch them making "Agua Ardente", this very strong alcoholic drink made from the rest of the grapes which were smashed before to make wine...
There was Bruno, her nephew, which father just recently died :-( , and his mom... Antonio was also there, one of Tia Adelina 's sons who is now working in France...

This is how the drink is made...the rest of the grapes are boiled in this beautiful pot, and the steam of it goes through that metal spiral which is inside a bin filled with cold water...the condensation transforms the steam into " Agua Ardente"... and that's it...
In the end we stayed for lunch... a nice barbecue with meat, sardines and peppers...
meanwhile the "Agua Ardente" was ready and we could taste it...well, just a little sip...it's soooooo strong !!!
After all the others left and it was only me, Emma and Tia Adelina... I had a nice conversation with her...well, more like a listening time...she told me a lot of her family story and in the end, as we were saying good-buy, she was telling us what I meantioned before, that she really appreciates us to be there...
as tears were almost falling down her eyes I told her that she now has a bunch of children just next to her :-) , they just speak some other weird languages, but they might learn portuguese one day :-) ...
That would be nice... we 'll see what God has still stored for this place :-)... May He also use us to make some of these old people feel less lonely, and also more useful in their end stage of life... they have so much to give and teach us ... we're blessed !!!




1 comment:

asp said...

The life history of Eugénio de Andrade, great Póvoa de Atalaia poet, is similar. Their mather poems are beautiful and deep
http://jprsantos.podomatic.com/player/2007-03-22T07_03_18-07_00?src=http%3A%2F%2Fjprsantos.podOmatic.com%2Fenclosure%2F2007-03-22T07_03_18-07_00.mp3&flv=0