weeknotes, 36/22

– after 40 years of washing my face with soap, i talked to a dermatologist about my intermittent acne and now i have a skincare routine of sorts. i don’t have high hopes, but it feels fun to be trying something new!

– we had a fun game night late last week, and our friends brought over an unexpected gift of locally grown mangoes. they were amazingly delicious, and i hope our tiny mango tree will one day grow into something that produces mangoes as delicious as these. :D

– this week was the mediterranean diet fair, the biggest event in the town’s calendar. it’s really nice to see people out and about again, watching some outdoor concerts (mariza, moçoilas and a bit of jorge palma), stocking on gifts for friends, and to enjoy this end of summer buzz, the mixed joy and sorrow of the last days wearing shorts and sandals.

– we’re packing for 7 weeks away, give or take — weeks that will include both formal events in berlin, and hiking in the alps. we might have been a bit optimistic when we thought we could pack it all in a 20kg suitcase…


weeknotes, 34-35/22

– the parents came over for a week, in their usual whirlwind of activity. :) there was much love, DIY and gardening, long walks, fruit from their farm and home cooked meals.

– the first bit of construction finished at long last, just in time to have the hot water switched on again on the day the parents arrived. pfeww! it sure feels nice to have warm showers again, after one month of cold ones!

– two new postcrossing stamps were announced, and they’re lovely!

– we booked a trip to germany to attend the german stamp launch, which will be in berlin. really excited to see this much awaited stamp come to life, and to see friends again as well! a bit less excited to fly and be among a large group of people… we’ll see how it goes.

– afterwards, we’ll take the train to italy, to catch up with our friends in what will be the first proper vacation in ages. i can’t wait to see them again, and also to catch a glimpse of autumn in central europe, always so nice!

– everybody seems to be watching the sandman on netflix these days, but awhile ago i started listening to the audio recreation of it, and it is outstanding. neil gaiman’s narration is impeccable as always, but the whole cast and the sound effects are unlike any other audiobook i’ve heard before (closer perhaps to an audio drama). i mostly hear audiobooks when i’m cleaning or moderating addresses, which is not a lot of time every week, and this book makes me wish for more boring tasks.

– we watched la odisea de los giles (heroic losers, in english) and we liked it a lot! also watched the classic uproar in heaven, one of journey to the west stories, which i found interesting. you can see so much of the peking opera music, moves and visuals in it! it’s almost hard to believe that the animation industry in china was practically destroyed a few years after this movie came out (thanks to the cultural revolution), and it would take decades for it to recover.


weeknotes, 32-33/22

– the construction is not yet over, but almost — at least this first part. the tiles are where they are supposed to go, and now only a few finishing touches are left. we’ll be happy to be rid of this huge thing to-do on our list. next project: painting the house.

– the local handicrafts fair was on last week, and we visited it on a couple of days to eat some sausage and pizza bread, and stock on handmade gifts for friends. one of the days we even walked the 6kms to town at the end of the day and came back by train.

– we went to seville to meet some (new) friends. talking to them about their projects was great and eating some pastries is always nice, but the city was sweltering hot, like walking into an oven. i want to go back for a longer period of time, outside the summer heat.

– we saw a bit of salvador sobral and also rita redshoes’ concerts. it’s very much peak summer now, the town is filled with people and you can almost feel everyone’s relief at being past the worst of the pandemic.

– this year’s world postcard day postcard is out, and the design is super cute. :)

– sometimes we go through the recipe books we have to find new recipes to try, and on one of these passes we decided to make some dalgona coffee, which apparently was all the rage online some years ago. the texture is interesting, and it’s amazing how you can get it just by beating instant coffee with sugar and water… like magic!

– finished the last bookshop in london, it was a quick and light read, despite the heavy theme of the blitz in london. my (metaphorical, because half of them are in the kindle) book pile is growing quite tall this year, but i’m happy about reading a bit more than in previous years. i recently realized i’ve had my kindle for over 10 years now, and it’s still doing a great job!


walking the marathon distance

for a while now, we’ve been following a youtube channel from a guy called beau miles. beau is very much into “backyard adventures”, a concept that i find fascinating — why do adventures need to be big and require huge planning and logistics? why do we feel like we need to go halfway across the country or the world in order to have an adventure, when there’s plenty of adventuring that can be had right around the corner? the pandemic made the whole idea seem even more attractive to me, and we ran with it… so to speak. more like we walked with it.

the goal of this adventure was to see if we could walk the marathon distance. turns out, between our town and the outer skirts of faro is a few meters over 42 kms on paper, so that seemed perfect — let’s walk to faro! the only issue with this plan is we were a bit short on daylight to complete the walk in december (which is when we did it), and the last stretch of it would be practically just walking on the road’s curb… which on the N125 means cars zooming by a couple of meters away at unsafe speeds. :( still, we decided to go for it, making up for the lack of daylight with an extra early wake up call.

which is perfect, because for me, the proper feeling of an adventure comes only if they start before the day dawns. so we got up really early, donned our little dorky headlamps and off we went through the salt ponds! the sun came up as we were reaching santa luzia and it was pretty magical to see. we sat down at a café there and had breakfast and a rest.

we repeated this walking + café breaks throughout the day, eating sandwiches and bolas de berlim, and powering through. many birds were spotted, conversations were had, new scenic spots were discovered that we want to go back to and check out again. walking is so easy, and yet so nice — just one foot in front of the other, again and again, until you get to where you’re going. i really enjoy the long walks, boring stretches and all.

blister packs are usually the thing that saves my poor little feet on long walks, but after so many kilometers, it would take a miracle to finish without any little pockets of pain. when we reached the train station in faro after many kms of walking, it felt like every little muscle hurt… but every little muscle was very happy too!

with this long walk, we’ve walked the portuguese coast all the way from vila real de santo antónio to faro and then from lagos to sagres, and from there turning north to porto covo, which is already a significant part of it! maybe one day we’ll continue the adventure and complete the walk all the way to caminha… that would be an adventure!

one second everyday

july 2022 — one second everyday

july had a lot destruction in it…

… but also nice sunrises, movies with friends, walks on the beach and in town at sundown, concerts and cold showers!