I’m consumed by time, in all its forms and glory. There is nothing like it.
I cannot tell why it is so, but I am. I even have written two novels about it and a third one will come out next year.
I don’t live my life like a time junky. I try lo live it as much peaceful and responsible as I can. Trying to master the art of not stressing. And how I do it? I simply take a deep breath and remember that some of my favourite people and times are all in books. They are all long gone. They may keep me company like no other “real” person but they are gone and there is nothing I can do to change it. So, if they are all gone, then let me enjoy those who are not. Hence the calmly enjoyment of living a day-by-day experience. Don’t get me wrong: I too get stressed but, by the end of the day, does it count to my “what have you done today to make you feel proud” kind of thing? No!
Because I love time “per se” so much, this last vacation of mine, besides the Pico experience that I told you about last time, we had a Faial Island experience. And, you cannot have one of those without going to visit, see, watch and know about the Dabneys. At least, I couldn’t!
Unfortunately, we weren’t on time to the house and cellar tour hours. But I got to check the kind of wine cellar entrance, right by the Porto Pim beach. My husband took a picture of what is now the beginning of a magical forest growing on its humid stone walls. The green is mesmerising. It did not take me long to start building up a fictional story-line, to create and alternative Horta’s history. It even gave me a push to write a few more lines of my third and final novel of the Tempo trilogy. That’s the thing when you are a writer: everything is a reason to get you to write. If it will turn out good or bad, that’s an all different story…
When you understand the importance of that family, you come to terms with the why Horta is as it is: the housing, the people and the over all feeling of “greatness”. When visiting the Dabneys’ part of the city, one does get the impression of how important that family was. Oh, did I mention that they had their own sightseeing place? I imagine the ladies going up there, to have their afternoon tea or to paint or even to do some embroideries. I also get the feeling that those were the days where you could really sense the island’s core. However, one cannot stop and feel for the “poor” servants. When you imagine those days, you tend to only image the glamorous part of it. Rarely do you think about the lesser spheres of society.
Thinking about that family, I do imagine myself living amongst them. Not necessarily rich or poor but I get the feeling that I know that place. Weird! Even more when you, out of the blue, can pinpoint stuff of the house and…. txaran: they are really there and they are the way you’ve described even though you have never set foot on those grounds before. Crazy!
Thinking about it, in some ways, Horta is a cosmopolitan city. In other ways, the city is pretty much lost in time. Sadly, some amazing buildings are being left to rotten and the name of Horta as a yacht port, having been the starting place of the cable transmissions over the Atlantic and other important historical facts, have made the city hold on to that name and, therefore, slowed its entrance into the 21st century.
Unfortunately, as a tourist, we were not prepared to have almost every shop and facilities closed on us, on a Saturday and on a Sunday. The ones that were available were the usuals: Peter’s and Genuíno. We had about two or three other places that were open, but those were related to nautical life. Apart from this, it was a nice weekend and great joy to “travel back in time” and if you are looking for anything local and traditional, take a deep breath and wait for next year’s Summer. They might be open.