Cleaning up Cabanas

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(Ben) Due to the nature of my work, I have the wonderful luxury of keeping to the schedule my body prefers. Of course this is likely to change drastically in the coming weeks when our baby arrives, but up to now I have tended to revert to what could only be described as a “teenage schedule” – sleeping in and working into the evening.

Last Saturday, we decided to join a group of volunteers in cleaning up the beach and riverfront in the nearby resort town of Cabanas. We both liked the idea of actually doing something for the community for once. In my case, my most significant act of charity was definitely the fact I had to get out of bed before 8AM to meet in the town at nine!

Cleaning up Cabanas
Cleaning up Cabanas

On arrival, everything was very relaxed in a typically Portuguese way. In fact, I probably would have got away with an extra hour in bed! Local army members were there as part of the effort, and after some milling around we were all given some bin bags and water, and allocated parts of the area to clean up.

The army await the cleaning volunteers
The army await the cleaning volunteers

We were part of a group allocated to tidy up an area of marsh and sand to the West of the town. By the time we wandered that way the sun was blazing down. If this was supposed to be work, then I’d happily do a lot more of it. The views were beautiful, and complemented by the warm feeling you get from doing something good!

Not a bad way to spend a Saturday morning in Portugal
Not a bad way to spend a Saturday morning in Portugal

Thanks to the large number of volunteers, our area was cleaned up very quickly. We turned down the kind offer of a complementary barbecue lunch, as all the bending down had rendered a very pregnant Louise in need of a nap!

We thoroughly enjoyed helping to clean up Cabanas. Woe betide anyone we see dropping litter from now on! Best of all though, I was reminded of why it can sometimes be good to rise early from my bed. I was sunburned before I’d usually have pulled up the shutters. However, with sleep pattern decisions soon to be taken out of my hands, I will make no apologies for any late awakening until the baby arrives. At least he will have a lovely clean beach to play on in the summer.

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  1. Good on you Ben and Lou – what a great way to help your local community. Litter louts are one of my biggest hates – the most common in east London being those cardboard boxes containing lurid red sauce covered chicken bones which seem to be found everywhere. Along with mattresses! I know a lot of the flotsum and jetsum at the beach is washed up from out at sea, but mindless littering is just ignorant. Its not as if there arent enough bins around on the beaches. Anyway, rant over. Enjoy your next few weeks of lie ins – you may well have to wait for a long time for the next one ๐Ÿ™‚ Saz

  2. Thanks Saz,

    Litter is one of the things I tend to notice most when we go back to London now, along with the noise and the sheer volume of people. I think I have definitely become accustomed to living somewhere so much smaller and quieter!

    We will certainly do our best to enjoy the peace while it lasts ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Best wishes,


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