I don’t know about you but I found 2017 to be a difficult year. There seemed to be a tidal wave of challenges happening both locally and globally. Even living in the middle of nowhere I found it hard to fully enjoy what we’ve been creating instead feeling the weight of all the suffering and insanity going on in the world. I guess the best we can do is to continuously shine our light in the darkness (and I know that is often easier said than done) and what better way for Ellis and I to do this than by sharing Rural Escapes Portugal with others. From the beginning of the project our principle has been to make Rural Escapes Portugal an ‘inclusive’ rather than exclusive place for people to relax and rejuvenate themselves; offering yoga and healthy food in this breathtaking rural location.
The reality we face at the moment is the sheer mammoth task of preparing this place for our first retreat beginning at the end of April. As I type I can hear Ellis on his digger (also known as the man cave!!) preparing areas for the four new bell tents that we recently purchased. We’ve chosen 4 perfect locations for the bell tents with easy access to the showers and soon to be kitchen area and with stunning views across the vally and beyond to Mount Foia. We’ve also opted to have the stand alone pool in the wooded area, so people can enjoy cooling down in the shade of the trees in the long hot summer months. We’ve agreed that the yoga platform needs to be bigger, so more work to do there.
Other areas to be prepared and completed include an open kitchen, 2 shaded areas for chilling out in and a new covered eating area, a new toilet, a wash basin near the showers. And then there is the purchasing of mattresses, bedding, towels, cooking items – the list goes on and on.
Liz was our most recent guest and stayed with us into the new year. She worked hard helping Ellis prepare logs for shaded area structures both at Sunrise Lodge, the yoga platform and the kitchen area, she also created a new feature area that includes two barrels for growing herbs and plants and a stunning dry wall. Thank you Liz for your drive and enthusiasm, you are a complete star!
We have 6 new workaway guests coming to help us over the next four weeks or so, one has a 2 and 1/2 month puppy so Mani (our dog) will be very pleased to have a little friend to play with, although I’m not so sure Boo (our cat) will be so excited!
“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” —Lao Tzu
Wishing you a wonderful year!