We had a copious lunch entirely made by the two eldest daughters of the Landin family. We decided to pay them what we would have paid at the restaurant, even if they insisted we shouldn't. Taking into account the local finacial difficulties we felt much better by having found a way to praise (verbally and in a monetary sense) their cooking skills.
As we were getting ready to walk back to the residencial pension to collect some more presents in order to distribute them Luana's mother came around to receive the envelope containing money to pay for any possible thing her daughter might need.
I walked into Jessica Joceane's, next to the Landin's to hand out the presents Francisco had sent his "goddaughter", as well as the money for the school needs which was given to her mother.
On the way to the pension we came across Tarine whose hair was smuthered in flour and egg (apparently a local custom whenever it is somebody's birthday, this being the case). We then stopped briefly at Veronica's so as to greet her parents.
On the way to the fishing port I came across Lina whom I handed her nephew's presents and money for the school needs once Ismael wasn't in, though we promised to go back later to take his photo and talk to him.
Aniza, Celeste's "goddaughter" happened to be passing by together with her cousin Marline, whose godmother Charlotte hadn't sent her anything because of having had a child recently and therefore no time to go shopping but I nevertheless handed her some presents I bought for her, as well as the ones Celeste bought for Aniza.
Some of the neighboorhood children having heard that I was in the village gathered in the centre of the little square waiting for me. I had to let them know that I'd be back in half an hour as I had to go back to the pension and fill another set of bags with their presents.
On the way up we came across Valter, who happened to be working at a mechanical post together with an uncle of his during the Easter holidays. I was extremely surprised to see how much older he looked in such a short period of time. My memories took me back to when still a youn boy he kept on coming to the school, where I was carrying out some Portuguese reading and interpretation courses, as well as artistic workshops, and begged me to accept him, which I eventually did, despite the fact that his name had not been included by the local board.
Once back at the hotel I handed out some presents to Maurício, Mr. Meno's eldest son who had lost his girlish look since last year and had become a lot more timid than he used to be.
Ineida, who no longer studies because of not having had a scholarship came around to tell me what her life of working on the roads was like. Despite having told me she was happy because she was getting money to help her family, she didn't look that happy so apart from giving her some clothes I had bought for her I decided to give her some money as well.
Kevin also came around and was handed the presents and money his "godparents", Luis and Cátia had sent him. Soon after Patrick showed up with his ever contagious smile to get the presents and money his "godmother", Mª João had sent him. I knew I had brought some sandals (once I had bought them on his godmother's request) but amidst the confusion of the luggage and the bags spread on the floor of my bedroom I hadn't managed to find them, having had therefore to ask him to come back the following day.
Soon after it was Marcio's turn to be handed his presents. For the first time ever I saw him smile and I may be wrong but I feel it must have had to do with the clothes' choice on the part of his godfather João de Barros.
Having washed her face and hair Tarine showed up to finally collect her yearly presents together her birthday's and she seemed to be particularly happy with what Ana Borges had sent her.
Little Helber and his cousin Ismael were finally granted the priviledge of getting "godparents" and they both seemed very happy with what they were handed out by Nídia and Rui respectively.
(To be continued)