OMG! I have a story to share today. Is Okay.
Imagine if you will, we’re sitting together. Sipping tea. This is Afternoon Tea with Jacqueline. A sample of how we can connect during the Health Crisis.
As you know, I’m in Portugal right now. Embracing the sunshine, fresh foods and local wines.
What I haven’t talked about is the ‘bureaucracy.’ The paperwork that allows me to be here.
Yesterday’s adventure was to go to the Tavira Camara (that’s the town hall in Tavira.) As instructed by the Loule Camara, to register for a temporary residency visa. On the journey to get to this appointment, I’ve had 6 interactions with a lawyer. Just to get a six-month lease sorted, so I could apply. More on this later.
And, we’ve had a roof leak this week, with my office getting somewhat damp! And the threat of the patio doors no longer holding back the onslaught until hubby waded in and unblocked a drain. Breathe, Jacqui, breathe!
So, back to Wednesday’s adventure: paperwork in hand, off I set. Got my numbered ticket. Waited for an hour. And watched as they decided to close early and ignore me.
YIKES! A local man, speaking fluent Portuguese, interjected on my behalf. And I was squeaked in!
The process going well, I signed and dated the form. As the rush of relief started to flood over me, the clerk looked up and said ‘You live in Almancil?’ Yes, I do. So, it turns out that the Loule Camara was where I had to file, and I was ushered out.
I went for coffee. It’s what one does here.
I sipped the scalding hot, milky beverage and breathed. A tear slid down my right cheek.
So, off to Loule! Closed for lunch. Lunch is 2 hours here. A lovely, disembodied phone voice told me to try calling after 2. 2:30 and I assigned hubby to the task. I’d decided to wander around Primark for some new leggings and an umbrella. Half-an-hour later and Hubby bounces up to me, somewhat Tigger like.
I’ve got an appointment. Hooray! It’s in 28 days…
But I’ll be over the 90 days allowed without a permit. “Is okay!” being the standard reply.
I continued shopping. By now, I’ve 2 x pairs leggings, a leopard-print umbrella, 2 x pairs lace knickers and a lemon-ginger scented-reed make-the-room-smell-lovely-thingy. Obviously, next stop was to find a sweater and a blouse to go with the leggings. Perhaps more panties? Oh yes, and a couple of fake eucalyptus swatches with tiny yellow lights.
Hubby sat quietly on a bench and sipped a coffee. Smart man!
Retail therapy to the rescue! I went home. Cooked a curry dinner. Sipped a glass of wine. And had an absolutely bonkers melt-down. Two hours. Crying. Sobbing. Nasty crying, not Princess crying. No delicate dabbing a tissue under my eyes. Sobbing, wailing, snotty and salty.
This morning I have a puffy face. My eyes look somewhat like golf balls. Pink golf balls. I’ve a hang-over. A frustration hang-over. Time to call a friend.
I’m talked off the edge. This is the way it is. In other words, I’m no longer in Canada, America or England. This is Mediterranean living.
So, I’ve decided to take a long weekend. I will finish today’s student evaluations. Spend time with a delightful client. And pull the plug for the next 3 days. No bureaucracy. No work. I plan to lunch tomorrow at the Beach Bar, with a gin tonica and a novel. Toes in the sand. Is okay!
Saturday, I’ll maybe invest time in some grocery shopping…or not. Depends on how the wind blows me.
And Sunday, similarly I’ll be my eccentric Brit self and made a traditional roast dinner with all the trimmings, for two. Probably wear my new jeggings and the new olive-lace blouse.
I summoned-up my inner Tony Montana this Tuesday when I had to face the lawyer. “Say hello to my little friend.”
Swinging between I take no prisoners and going with the flow. Therefore, I guess I’ve found some balance. Just for today!
What’s going on with you? How are you coping? Is the health crisis making you sad, angry, up and down? Or have you found a place of peace and contentment. Shoot me a line back and let me know how you’re doing.
Above all, remember that I’m here for you. Don’t forget to sign-up for my updates. Come and have Afternoon Tea with me.
And remember to follow me on Instagram @JFairbrass, and keep in touch.
Thank you for being you and sharing you with me.