Cottage Farm * Being here feels like a journey to rediscover the rural Portugal, in authentic (free) form, without excessive modern refinements. We’ve felt remembering our own childhood, when we’ve visited our origins. The first impression is of warmth, received with sympathy, invited to share the family lifestyle. Received with joy, a homemade 100% apple juice bottle, and some treats from the farm. You are welcome to enjoy how a traditional biological farm actually works, within the animals (gooses, chickens, sheeps, dogs, cats…), several trees species, mixed with the love for rural vernacular architecture, vintage cars. Mr Junqueira is passionate about rural buildings, with some history. He’s a unique person, with a good taste for architecture, investing in places, restoring them, giving them new life, with extreme care and sensitivity, avoiding too much modern contamination. Overall he tries to make some sense, and with details such as refurbishing old woodem planks into doors, oldstyle electricity switches, sanitary equipment, balconys, windows types (…), to resemble or just be the ones there were on the original construction date. Allowing the building to be as it was, like a small-museum, keeping the memory alive. One thing I would like to enhance is local economic philosophy, both Mr and Mrs Junqueira contribute to the local economy, which i found a plus, and a good attitude to have. Mrs Aurora is a woman of caring, joyfull, and farm dedicated. Very delightfull presence and candour. I’ve been searching for dwellings that keep the soul of the place, and I was amused by this. It’s pure, it is what it is. Don’t expect “polished” refurbished building that actually feel “new”, deleting all sense of “original” vintage, out of context. We have a baby of 4 month, and a 3 year old child. We’ve chosen this place to allow our kids to be part of the farm initially, but returned experience was indeed much more than that. Our child was quickly freely enjoying the outside (with security and eye-on), jumping around, falling a lot, almost eating dirt, chasing outsider gooses (scaring them??), feeding chicken and Violet the dog with Mrs Aurora. Tooking some apples from the tree. Learning to be in the field, mixed with everything. Our kid was truly happy! I believe with time, here you can also learn how to make the refreshing homemade apple juice; learn a bit how to culture bio agriculture, besides enjoying the place. There is a lot more to tell about the experience, but one thing is certain: Don’t expect perfect modern style, (re)stuffed into a “rustic” place. You will get your feet blessed with some dirt. You will get pleasured by the nearby tide-driven mill with relaxing spots. You will enjoy quiet nearby river beach, and surrounding cities. You will enjoy Vino Verde. You will enjoy the tree density, the free gooses passing by your doorstep. You will love the earth-connection. Even the house tips and tricks you’ll enjoy them. // PT 2018.08

Hugo Nascimento * Lisbon, Portugal
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