Dia de São João e Manjerico

O meu vaso de Manjericos
Its summertime and that means the season of "feriados municipais." These are the annual town holidays and many occur around the season of Santos Populares, in particular Santo Antonio and São João.The 13th and 24th of June are the two most popular dates.There’s an old saying in Portugal that says; “Porto works while Lisbon plays”.Well this is not exactly the case; Lisbon´s patron Santo Antonio was the cause for partying and celebrations on the 13th while Porto parties on from the 23rd to the 24th in celebration of their patron São João.When São João is celebrated in Porto, from 23 to 24 June It is a festival that is lived to the full in the streets, where anything is permitted. People carry a leek with them which they use to hit their neighbours over the head, all in a healthy spirit of fun.Down south here in the Algarve this weekend Mertola, Castro Marim and Tavira are brimming over with festivities and will be kicking up a party like you’ve never experienced in your life!.This morning while I was shopping in the market Dona Margarida from my favourite fruit and veg stall presented me with a pot of her home grown Manjerico. The tradition is that if you are attracted to someone, you declare yourself to them in the heat of the festivities and offer them a manjerico (a flower-pot with a sweet basil plant) and a love poem.Well I´m not so sure that I´m in favour of being a floosie and we decided to use the manjerico as a table centrepiece for our guests´ dinner.

A todos, votos de boas feriados


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