I don't tend to have a particular daily routine here, just go with the flow, but weekends I do like to go up to the market in Almocageme and potter and perhaps visit the local shops for weekend bits and pieces. Today is a lovely day with the sky varying between bright blue and cloudy and the spring blossom is starting to come out very quickly now and the shades of green in the countryside are magnificent. So here is an idea of my Saturday morning.
First, up to the market to get some free range eggs which usually contain at least two double yokers, some nice tiny tomatoes, red onions, white onions, green beans, some more fresh peas, mango, kiwi, mushrooms, big pear, cauliflower, more fabulous jam and chutney, a cheese and some beautiful freesias.
The egg lady
Fernanda for her jam, chutney and sheep cheese
Today's choice was bitter orange jam, mango chutney and her home made sheep cheese
A wonderful pear for a crumble or just plain stewed
Some home made piri piri, red onions, fresh peas and tiny tomatoes
One of my two bunches of freesias
Walking back to the car, my eye was caught by a choice of shrubs and I decided to buy one as it saved me a trip to the garden centre. I needed a nice shrub to fit in a space in the raised flower bed at the back and as it was only 6 euros, I think I did very well.
My new hebe
The next stop is Almocageme village for the laundry. I love the laundry. The ladies are so sweet and helpful and although it might seem an extravagence, it is not as the prices are so reasonable and I only take my bedding, bedcovers and curtains and they come back to me, smelling wonderful and beautifully ironed. It also means that I am not struggling to dry stuff over a small clothes maiden in front of the wood burner during the winter.
The ladies busy working
It is a rather tiny place but so industrious and although it may look chaotic, they know where everything is. They also do a dry cleaning service and offer pick up and delivery too. The smell of the fresh laundry is just divine and makes changing the bed a pleasure because you know you will fall asleep in sweet smelling sheets. I always use the name 'Rosa' when having things mended or cleaned, as it is easier than Sally. Here I am known as Rosa the Foreigner, as there is another local called Rosa. It's really funny.
After the laundry, it is time to nip in the butchers to pick up some more of their fabulous homemade meatballs. We tried these for the first time this week - and used the recipe that they suggested - and they are delicious. No additives, just good meat, herbs and vegetables. They even suggest flattening them into burgers if in a hurry. I buy all my meat from here and have never been disappointed. They are a mine of useful information about the meat, events in the village and general tips. All the meat is locally sourced too. Their chickens are succulent and their chicken breasts are cut from whole chickens in front of us. One breast is big enough to serve two people easily.
Francisco Jose Ferreira Rosa - the name of the butchers
Our brilliant butchers
Tasty homemade meatballs
Then it's time for coffee and toast in the cafe opposite. This cafe does some 'serious' toast.
Toast for two!
Fully refreshed, it's time to return to the car, after checking out the bus stop and it's elderly gang. These men are here every day and sometimes it is overflowing. They seem to like to watch the passing traffic and people. We are in no doubt that they comment on everything too - a bit like Last of the Summer Wine gang.
Normally no less than six men discussing life and the universe
A lovely way to spend Saturday morning or any morning really.