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How to Mix Cement in Portugal

1. Struggle with about a ton of material in many many trips, up and down steep terraces only accessible by slate stairs built sometime in the last 500 years.

2. Carefully gather materials and fail to properly mix them in the right proportions.

3. Perch oneself on the falling edge of a levada, and make sure to line the wheelbarrow chock-full- the more precarious, the better.

4. Wear heavy iron-shod boot one size too big (try mine, they are an American 15!)

5. Lose your balance and plunge a good 6 feet towards the bottom. This works best when the wheelbarrow and all its contents falls on top of you in the process.

6. Make sure there are plenty of sharp brambles and rocks to break your fall…

7. Lay there stunned for about 10 seconds, and let Pete know you’ve survived intact. He might need to to find another woofer.

8. Gather up everything that spilled (including yourself) and re-collect at the top of the levada you wanted to repair.

9. Give Thanks to the Most High for another day of health and life.

By strictly following this scientific procedure, the enitre wheelbarrow of material will be thoroughly mixed and so will you. I was, for sure…


One Comment

  1. Sarah says:

    very funny…the word prat springs to mind!!!!!!!

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