February already, and the start of our forth month in Portugal. After reading back through my last few posts, I have discovered that I am scarily weather obsessed (they say that about the English, it must be true,) so I am going to try to avoid talking about the weather for this post, other than to say it’s been pretty sunny and a lot more like we expected…
We seem to have settled into a routine now, and much as we thought before we moved that it would be marvellous to not have so much time pressure, having some sort of structure does seem to be good for the soul, and is making us more settled. My work is very flexible, so can really be done at any time, but we have now both settled back into something much more like a nine to five. Having back the excitement of Friday night, along with the slight sadness at the end of a Sunday just seems right somehow. Also, when finishing at five actually means finishing at five, rather than beginning a hellish commute at five, it makes you grateful for the extra time you have at your disposal. Time that can be spent cooking healthy food and (I never thought I would say this) getting some exercise!
Our language learning is coming on slowly but surely, every so often I look around me and realise that all of a sudden I seem to know the words for a lot more things. Where we still fall down is conjugating verbs and constructing actual sentences. To assist with this, last week we purchased a thick book called “501 Portuguese Verbs” (link below.) I have yet to look through it, but my wife did and so far she says the main thing that it has taught her is that it will be many, many years before we are anything approaching fluent!
During the last week we have restored a tiny bit of colour to our cheeks, had our second barbeque of the year, and visited one of the best restaurants we have tried so far in Portugal (see the review at www.foodandwineportugal.com) Our mould problems, sadly, are not over, but are improving and we have now found a new rental property starting from May. The mould is a pain, but from what we have read on forums, it is a common problem, so all we can really do is deal with it as best we can until we move. It would be nice though to have a few days without mould related sniffles, or bleach related sore throats!
Other than that, there isn’t much to tell from the last week – but not much to complain about either. We still like it here