Newsletter July 2014
Margarida Sampaio @
So summer is officially here but it seems that the weather has not really given any thought to it and while we were roasting like one of the piggies in the square during a party at the start of the month, as soon as the calendar flipped into summer the weather took a distinctly different turn here in Carvoeiro.
Oh, but it’s not all about the weather really because anyone who comes to Carvoeiro during the summer and has also experienced the winter here with us will know that summer here is more of a mind-set and a parking problem than about the hours of sunshine – although a few more when you have planned a beach day might be nice!
Talking about the weather we now have a more accurate way to track what is happening in Carvoeiro as in June we had a new weather station inaugurated up at the school. I wouldn’t like to say that I am obsessed with the weather but I do take a keen interest in what is going on outside my window – primarily for fashion related reasons obviously – and this is my new favourite tool to use.
You know when you are sat in a sunny spot and wondering just how hot it really is – or when you are outside shivering with a gale force wind and want to know how freezing it is – well this site has the answers!
Every 5 minutes or so new data is uploaded from the weather station up by the school and we can then look at it online where we have an accurate reading of the temperature, humidity levels, UV levels, rainfall intensity and other great stuff!
See all these goodies about Carvoeiro weather here (in Portuguese but easy to understand) http://meteofonteslitoral.cm-lagoa.pt/ with the best part being if you scroll down to the bottom there are satellite images including Spain, France, UK, Ireland and the rest of Northern Europe and you can feel smug as you watch the rain clouds pass over other countries!
HOLIDAYS ARE COMING
While the sun may have been a little shy in recent weeks this has not stopped legions of pale folks who have released their legs to the elements for the first time in 12 months forgetting to put on ample sun screen. In trying to explain the dangers of not being sun safe I have inadvertently drawn the attention of the children to red people and now one of their favourite holiday pastimes is to point, stare an giggle at pink people while declaring “Look – another one with no sun cream on!”– you have been warned!
But the arrival of many guests in the town (pink or otherwise) is always a welcome sight and it is feeling busy around the place, although we are still able to find a patch of sand to place our towel on the beach at the moment, this is sure not to last much longer.
The summer holidays may not have begun in other parts of Europe yet but the children here broke up from school in the middle of June (I never want to hear a moan about dealing with only six weeks worth of school holidays when I am traumatised by the 13 I have to deal with). With the children out of school we now have the bouncy castle back on the beach in the evenings and most nights there are children running about the place and helping to give that holiday feel to Carvoeiro which, despite my groanings I do actually love to see.
This is the time of year when we have scores of pushchairs about the place and thanks to bollards and paving these pushchairs can now navigate around Carvoeiro on the pavements and don’t need to venture out onto the open road (if you are an offender please stop it!)
UNDER (OVER, ALONG & AROUND) THE BOARDWALK
Everyone (well most people) will be pleased to know that you can now walk along the boardwalk all the way from the church at the top of the cliffs down to Algar Seco.
Works on the boardwalk started in January and it seems to have taken forever to get there but you can now get along the boardwalk where there are some amazing spots to stop and take some photos.
I know there has been a little controversy about putting the boardwalk along the cliffs as it spoils the natural beauty of the area but I am in the camp of thinking this is a good thing on the whole. It is giving people a safe (ish) route to walk along the cliffs which was very dangerous in the past and is encouraging people to explore other parts of the town rather than just the beach area.
I think that because it has been made out of wood it really isn’t that much of an eyesore and at least it is a natural material more in keeping with the setting.
Word of warning though – there are steps along this boardwalk so it is not exactly pushchair or wheelchair friendly but it is not bad. Also the design of the boardwalk is somewhat “rustic” so beware of toddlers launching themselves of the edge. Other than that it is a rousing success!
BLACK & WHITE NIGHT
And when it comes to talking about successes it is hats off to the organisers of the very first Carvoeiro Black & White night which was held in the town on 21st June.
Nobody really had any idea how the event was going to go with rumours circulating about the money being spent, what would actually happen and how many people would even turn up for the event but it turned out to be a fantastic night with around 10,000 people coming down for the event!
Basically, for those who weren’t there, the roads along the bottom half of Rua dos Pescadores and Rua do Barranco and half of the O Farol were closed and this meant that the businesses were able to extend out – especially on the O Farol where tables and chairs filled the parking spaces.
There was a stage on the O Farol opposite the Round Up Saloon with music including a DJ and one down opposite restaurant Oasis which had a Fado singer (and it was commented that some of the songs even sound a little cheery!).
In the square was where the main attractions were with pretty ladies wearing lots of black and white balloons and not so many clothes, Kiss FM did a broadcast and then we had an amazing fire performance. This could have been made better if the fire dancers and eaters were actually allowed on the stage as many people were scrambling for a view but it was still great. Then we had the Linda Scanlon band do a very lively performance which had everyone doing a bit of an Irish jig!
To finish off the night, those that still had the energy headed straight to the beach for a DJ set and lots of drinking and dancing on the sand (and also the odd flare!) until 3am.
This really was a great event and was generally well received. A few tweaks need to be made to sort out where the cars for all the people could perhaps be parked for the event and perhaps a few extra staff should have been put on to cope with the influx of people (although nobody had any idea it would be that busy) but all in all a great night for Carvoeiro and hopefully it will be bigger and better next year. The date is already set so make sure you are in Carvoeiro for June 20th next year where the theme is black and white Burlesque (!?)
If you want to have a look at a video of the night then there is a good one here put together by the organisers and giving a good idea of how it all happened! http://www.carvoeiro.com/video
AFTER THE HIGHS COME THE LOWS
The Black and White night was an amazing success unfortunately the same could not be said of the performance by the Portuguese national football team at the World Cup this year (or the English or the Spanish…)
The bars were of course packed for the opening games but when it became clear that it really was all over there was a deflate feeling in the town and the facepaints were all put away until the Euros come around again and everyone can get their hopes up.
Luckily we still have Brazil in the competition and there are a good few yellow and green flags still flying high and the orange army of the Dutch are still going strong – good luck to all who are still in the competition and make sure you come down to Carvoeiro to watch the matches – practically everywhere has a television so cheer on a team while supporting the local Carvoeiro businesses (who needs a better excuse to drink a beer than that!)
While we are all enjoying the summer here we did have two very tragic accidents in the Carvoeiro area last month. You can read about the details here http://algarvedailynews.com/news/2710-lagoa-car-crash-one-dead-and-four-injured and here http://www.theportugalnews.com/news/british-artist-and-long-term-partner-killed-in-lagoa-villa-blast/31943
It is always shocking to hear of deaths such as these in the local area and I know many people knew Paul Fonck and Glyn Uzzell who died in the blast – our thoughts are with family and friends.
The terrible accident on the road outside the Cepsa garage left two young French tourists dead and is an awful reminder about how we all need to take extra care on the roads in the summer months. There are many more cars about at this time of the year with lots of people unsure about the routes they are taking so let’s all take care on the roads in the Algarve this summer.
Looking forward to the coming month and July has plenty going on both in and around Carvoeiro and across the Algarve.
Every night there is entertainment in the square by the beach for free while many bars and restaurants also have live music, karaoke and Fado – depending on your taste.
If you want to discover the local area on foot then you can take part in moonlight walk s around Lagoa this month and into August. The walks start at 8.45pm and are between 4 and 5km in length. The Lagoa walk is on July 3, Porches July 10, Estombar July 17, Parchal July 24, Ferragudo July 31 and finally the Carvoeiro walk will be on August 7 – visit http://www.cm-lagoa.pt/pt/agenda/3868/caminhadas-ao-luar.aspx for more details.
We have the Lagoa sweet fair taking place this month at the convent from July 17 – 20 while those who prefer something a little more slimy should head down to Porches for the 20th edition of the snail festival which is on between Jul 9th and 13th with live music, entertainment and of course – lots of snails to nibble on!
And for those who feel the need for speed – or to watch others and site quietly with a beer in the stands – then we have the Superbike World Championships this month at the Algarve Motor park near to Portimão between July 4 and 6th followed by the Ferrari Challenge at the motor park between July 18th and 20th.
New articles in the Financial section:
- Do I Need A Tourist License To Rent Out My Property?
- Does your property have a tax value over 1 million euros?
- How can I reduce my IMI taxes? June 30th 2014
If you have spotted troops of lithe young ladies in matching tracksuits walking about the place then they are competitors in the Dance World Cup which is going on at the moment at the Centro Congresso do Arade in Parchal. A few of the teams are staying locally (much to the delight of certain local residents!) while they take part in the event which is on until July 5th.
I am off now to pull out my tap shoes, wave my jazz hands and don my sweatband in solidarity…
Until next month