About the Book
I have sought to show, with some intimacy, a side of Portugal whose values and way of life seem, in many ways, congenial with my own. From market traders to fishermen, pilgrims to gypsies, I was drawn to those whose lives seem somewhat distant from the glare of the fast changing modern world, and who form the underbelly of a country where change is rapidly accelerating. I found these people to be polite and warm-hearted, often leading a traditional way of life, usually guided by religious beliefs and principles. They live and thrive in a diverse landscape; from the open plains of southern Alentejo to the more mountainous north. Along the west coast the terrain is wild and rugged, with glorious – often empty – beaches, and majestic cliffs that have been sculpted by the pounding waves of the Atlantic Ocean. To the east lies an interior of mountains and broad river valleys.