The heat is on…

(Nice spot to wait for the laundry to dry on Sunday)

That title is supposed to say the heating’s on… we’re dipping below two digits on the thermometer again and as I’m not talking about the rain I can’t tell you about what’s happening outside. Oh but it’s windy enough to shake Ruby.

(The seagulls were having a bit of a sing along at the fisherman’s beach in Ericeira)

I’ll tell you what we did for Easter Sunday instead. We had dinner in the Intermarche. The Intermarche is a French supermarket chain here in Portugal.

(No fishermen but a few surfers)

While we were parked near Ericeira on Sunday doing the laundry we noticed a queue at the cafe in the supermarket. A very long queue, which made us curious. What are they selling? Why are these people willing to queue for it on Easter Sunday? How could we find out?

(Town of Ericeira)

We joined the queue. Well we joined the wrong queue to be precise. It was 12 noon, the queue started to move. As we got closer there was a choice to be made. Left arrow in blue with some Portuguese words and right arrow in red with different Portuguese words. We joined the left arrow queue. It was moving very slowly and when we got close to the top we noticed all the choices seemed to be raw…

(Saturday:Highest temperatures so far, left number inside van, right number outside)

We considered what this might mean. Probably not sushi. There was a Portuguese family behind us. I started with the boy who, I figured could be studying English, do you speak English? Alas, he mustn’t have been studying very hard he gave me the universal sign for not really. Behind him his granny gave me a huge smile, her son was next, they were a very smiley family. Finally the mum, she could speak English and explained, this queue was if you wanted your meal cooked from raw. The whole family smiled and nodded as we left that queue.

(Lots of blue and mustard trim in Ericeira)

So we found the other queue and all the food was cooked but it wasn’t easy to work out what it might be. Do you speak English? I asked the lady serving. She did. So I asked her what’s that dish there. It looked lovely. But I surprised her by asking in the middle of a busy queue on Easter Sunday, so she got stuck. You know how it is when you can’t remember the word for something? It often happens to me when I’m tired and I can’t remember the word for something. In English, I mean.

(We were loving the shade on Saturday)

So there she was trying to recall the word and the whole queue was holding its breath and the other servers were watching her and time stood still. Finally she said octopus! Would you have said lovely, I’ll have that? I so wanted to say lovely sad I would have… for anything other than octopus… I had a pained expression on my face when I said no sorry what’s that one beside it?

But I needn’t have worried she had found her stride and told me it was cod fish. You remember Isabel told us about the Portuguese love of cod? I could redeem myself and I did. Yes, please I’ll have that!

(Easter Sunday dinner with a view)

As I keep telling you everyone tries to help us and even when they can’t speak English they make us feel really welcome with huge smiles.

Easter Sunday dinner for two with beer, water and orange juice at Intermarche Ericeira? €10.20. Mairead.