OK, it's only a few days since I posted, but it seems a long time with so many exciting things going on - for OurNet, at home, with new ideas, and not least - The Pure Portugal Podcast
"Olá e bem-vindo" to the very first Pure Portugal podcast...
I'm delighted host and producer of this new monthly audio publication that coincides with Pure Portugal’s 14th birthday.
It was on the 10th May 2004 that Sophie Kempin started Pure Portugal with husband Andy Hill (who now runs his own seed selling business www.foodforests.eu). As we now know, Pure Portugal was an idea whose time had obviously come!
I myself am very grateful for Sophie’s inspired idea and subsequent dedication given that the Pure Portugal team as it was in 2008 welcomed me on my exploratory first visit and here I am now 10 years later, having made this wonderful country my home.
Pure Portugal has grown to become an inspiring and truly helpful enterprise with its mainstay of properties for sale (with the ‘good life’ twist) as well as its rentals and holiday listings plus a new French edition of the website, which you’ll hear more about later in an interview with Shahnaz Radgy.
As well as the websites, Pure Portugal has an impressive and dynamic social media presence as well an exciting offline, real world social network that is exploring and putting into practice natural and sustainable ways of living and growing.
So 'Happy Birthday' to Pure Portugal - a great idea, created and run by great people, celebrating a great country who we learned only yesterday has been voted the most friendly country in the world! - https://www.forbes.com/forbes/welcome/?toURL=https://www.forbes.com/sites/jennysouthan/2018/03/21/the-worlds-friendliest-countries-revealed/
Shout out to all the team at this time of celebration and acknowledgement, namely:
SOPHIE KEMPIN, Director,
JOANA SOARES, Property Manager
RAQUEL RIBEIRO, Property Listings and Personal Helper / Property Finder
DANIEL CUNHA, IT and Communications Manager, Holidays & Rentals Website
DEBORAH RICHMOND, Events & Services
SHAHNAZ RADJY, Website Manager for our French language website Pur Portugal
FRANCOIS CRAMER, Francophone Pur Portugal Community Manager
CLARE MONSON, Newsletter, Mailouts, and Facebook Group Admin
AMBER LEWIS, Pure Portugal Post Girl
In this, the first podcast:
The 'Pure Portugal Podcast Profile' with Louisa and Carl Munson - www.carlmunson.com
The 'do’s and don’ts' of planning and building a Tiny Home with Raphael Jeronimo - http://www.ecositana.pt/
An introductory Portuguese language lesson with Anna PT - https://www.facebook.com/PTlessonswithANAPT/
Find out more about the new French website and how its hosts are enjoying life in Portugal - www.purportugal.fr
'What's Growing in YOUR Garden' with Ruan Austin in Sophie Kempin’s back garden - https://www.facebook.com/quintadoscovoes/
All roads lead to: http://www.pureportugal.co.uk
The Pure Portugal Podcast is shared as information and entertainment - it is not intended as, and should not be a substitute for, professional advice.
Press play, above, to hear about the reigning champion, Lisbon info' and my favourite seafood restaurant.
Read below about all the things you can't take into the auditorium, including handcuffs, ladders and drill bits, #obvs!
We've just been on a wonderful road-trip. Our dentist (the wonderful Reinhard Kraus) is based in Loulé, so the journey from our base in Lisbon always offers us an opportunity to extend our trip and explore both The Algarve and Alentejo.
In Loule, we stayed at the friendly, inexpensive and most central Dom Ferdinand II hotel, and my Loulé photo-journal from this most recent trip can be found here.
The journey home was a great way for us to celebrate our 5th wedding anniversary, a superb adventure that we named the 'M-O-O trail' as we took Monchique, Odimera and Ourique in our stride on the way home - a delightful and do-able day-trip if you want a broad-stroke taste of Southern Portugal.
This isn't a full-scale review of each of those towns, each with much to commend it, more a big shout-out for a unique treasure discovered along the way - 'Miradouro De Benafatima'.
The climb to this incredible place, pictured, atop the Serra De Monchique is tense and terrifying. One of those brown signs points the way for anyone wanting a good view ('Miradouro'). However, after what feels like 5, then 10, then 15 minutes of driving on a dusty, gravely track, you wonder if you'll ever be found alive.
Holding your nerve, you're rewarded with this stunning view...
As with most mobile shots, the panoramic snap doesn't do this view justice, but up here you can see for MILES! So far in fact, we could clearly see two weather systems, visible in the photo.
This is another of those understated Portuguese treats, and well worth the effort if you're looking for the real Alentejo. Take a picnic and watch out for unexpected guests like this 'Oil Beetle' (left) who can get you with a toxic secretion.
The only web link I can find for Miradouro De Benafatima is fairly obscure, but it does have a map.
I was so taken by the place I decided to record a Facebook Live stream to announce my upcoming podcast and radio show projects. I truly felt 'on top of the world'! Here's the video...
Hear the sound of 'Dunas Douradas' not far from Faro, Portugal, including children at play, waves crashing on the sharp, clean sand, and a jet flying overhead.
Dunas Douradas, translating as 'golden dunes' is a classic among Portuguese beaches - wilder in atmosphere than The Algarve waterfront is usually thought to be - served well by free car parking and a collection of bar-restaurants who've colonised the locality, keeping visitors fed and watered.
This beautiful beach is free to use, but feels like exclusive, private property thanks to development between it and the main roads from Faro and Albufeira.
More about local bars and eateries here - map also included.
Thanks to Salvador Sobral and his song "Amar pelos dois" (Loving For Both of Us) - written and co-performed by his sister Luísa Sobral - Portugal will play host to this year’s Eurovision Song Contest, in just over a week. Kiev 2017 was Portugal's first win, and first top-five placing, in 53 years of participation, the longest win-less run by a country in Eurovision history. It was also the first winning song entirely performed in a country's native language since Serbia's "Molitva" in 2007.
As we gird our loins in readiness, here’s a little Good Morning Portugal guide to the annual endurance test that is guaranteed to create a marathon, ‘marmite’ mix of music and performances:
A whopping 43 countries will be sending one musical act to Lisbon, where the 63rd Eurovision Song Contest will take place. Each participating broadcaster that represents their country has chosen their performer (maximum 6 people) and song (maximum 3 minutes) through national televised or internal selection. Each is free to decide if they send their number-one star or the best new talent they could find.
The winner of the Eurovision Song Contest will be chosen through two Semi-Finals (8th and 10th May) and a Grand Final (12th May). Traditionally, six countries are automatically pre-qualified for the Grand Final. The so-called 'Big Five' - France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom - and the host country.
On Grand Final night, the ultimate 26 participants must sing live, while no live instruments are allowed. After all songs have been performed, each country will give two sets of 1 to 8, 10 and 12 points [I don't understand that either]; one set given by a jury of five music industry professionals, and one set given by viewers at home. Viewers can vote by telephone, text and through the official app. To keep things fair, you cannot vote for your own country.
Once the voting window has closed, the presenters will call upon spokespersons in all 43 countries and ask them to reveal their jury points live on air. Next, viewers' points from all of the said countries will be added up, and revealed from the lowest to the highest, culminating into a climax that will eventually reveal the winner of this upcoming Portuguese-flavoured finale.
The winner will perform once again, and take home the iconic glass microphone trophy!
You’re welcome! (-;
[With thanks to www.eurovision.tv and Wikipedia for background information and image]
PS I took the further liberty of working my way through the winners of previous years to prove that some decent, if not certainly memorable, tunes have blessed our souls thanks to this unique event. That two-hour ‘special’ can be heard below...
Desculpe, sorry, to have missed Portugal's observance of International Workers' Day yesterday, as well as Beltane. By way of a Beltane blessing, here's some Broom flowers for you (left), which I believe in Northern Portugal are picked on the evening of April 30th, before midnight. They are thought to protect against spirits, witches (presumably the naughty ones) and the 'evil eye' that might appear come May 1st.
As for so-called 'Workers' Day', the first two workers I spoke to this morning said they'd worked yesterday. Funny how it's one day a year for the workers, many of which - nearest the breadline - probably turned up for the minimum wage, at one of their numerous jobs. Roll on the system that ends this inequity, when we can look back at May Day as the eradication of feudal capitalism once and for all!
"In Portugal, the 1 May celebration (Portuguese: Primeiro de Maio) was harshly repressed during the long right wing dictatorship of António de Oliveira Salazar and Marcelo Caetano. Since the Carnation Revolution on 25 April 1974, the Worker's Day is celebrated by unions but as well by several leftist political parties with parades and demonstrations. The first demonstration after the Carnation Revolution, only one week after the coup, stays until today as the biggest demonstration in the history of Portugal. It is an opportunity for workers, including non-permanent workers' groups, to show their discontent for existing working conditions in parades all over the country but mainly in the capital, where the two main national union federations (communist CGTP-IN and centre-left UGT) organize two different rallies (in Alameda D. Afonso Henriques and Torre de Belém). It is an official public holiday." - wikipedia
An annual opportunity to showcase discontent? Seriously, is workers' discontent a set-piece? Will we ever be free of neo-liberialism's us and them?
[Grammarians: "Workers' Day" or "Worker's Day"? - I would have thought Workers' Day as it's the day of ALL workers, not just one?]
Not sure who created this cheeky meme, but hats off to them and the (Portuguese) Facebook friend who shared it!
Good Morning Portugal!' Radio Show AND Pure Portugal Podcast to Launch in May 2018...
As Portugal and its people continue to feel an ever-increasing feelgood factor from tourists and newcomers alike, a new English-speaking radio show AND podcast are set to take to the airwaves and Internet. I'm behind both new productions and first fell in love with Portugal ten years ago, returning last year from the UK with the intention of setting up business and family life in this country.
I will host and produce the new 'Good Morning Portugal!' radio show - a mid-morning mix of upbeat music and topical Portuguese features - which will first air at 10:00 on Wednesday 16th May, 2018. Less than a week before, on Thursday 10th May, I'll be publishing the first 'Pure Portugal Podcast', a collaboration with Pure Portugal Limited, who advertise properties for sale in Portugal, as well as holiday accommodation and rentals, with a particular emphasis on traditional and natural approaches (more about them here)
I am so excited and delighted to be sharing my enthusiasm and love for Portugal on my new radio show and in the podcast, as a complement to my 'day job' as Community Builder at OurNet, an online community network. This will be a great opportunity for me and anyone else to celebrate all that's great about being here in Portugal, at such an exciting and booming time for the country.
As well as 'feeling the love', the show and podcast will also be looking at some of the more challenging parts of life in Portugal, which has recently featured well on many tourism and retirement polls, as well as becoming a game-changing leading light in alternative energy. Looking at every aspect of life, I promise my approach will be respectful and positive, with a dash of humour in among a diverse range of featured people and places.
I'm really pleased to be working with Pure Portugal again. Their help was invaluable when I first visited a decade ago, and they remain a great support network for me and thousands of other people who are looking to 'live the good life' here - especially those interested in the environment, alternative energy, sustainability and organic growing.
Both the radio show and podcast will share information and best practice on a every area of making a life and a living in Portugal, which I feel is uniquely positioned at a very challenging time, globally.
We even have the Eurovision Song Contest heading this way, but don't let that put you off our new show and podcast!
If you have a comment, question, suggestion or a request, get in touch
April 25th is Portugal's 'Freedom Day', a national holiday, which remembers and celebrates the
bloodless military coup that took place on this day in 1974, known as the 'Carnation Revolution'.
The revolution ended nearly forty years of authoritarian rule, under Oliveira Salazar, which began in 1937, known as the 'Estado Novo' regime - thought to be the longest dictatorship in twentieth century Europe.
"Supported by the civilian population, the revolution changed the Portuguese political system from the authoritarian rule to a modern democracy. The military coup was undertaken by the Armed Forces Movement (MFA) led by General Antonio Spinola and other prominent civilian and military leaders," - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carnation_Revolution
More here, for the 'Good Morning Portugal!' podcast...
My photo of the Sun setting on Freedom Day, in Lisbon, from the 25 Abril Bridge on 25th April, 2018
As well as hosting the "Good Morning Portugal!" Radio Show, I write about this wonderful country - the places, people and the lovely experiences I'm having here.