Termas da Azenha

Holiday rentals in Portugal

The first and only Bed & Breakfast & Bathrobes in the world

Time to party! It’s April 25th! Commemoration of the Carnation Revolution

It may have been a long time ago, but the ending of a dictatorship always deserves a celebration in my eyes until the eternity of eternities. If something says trouble, it’s dictatorship. Always accompanied by uncertainty and mistrust. And those are annoying things that you do not necessarily have to look up, because you will encounter them during your life anyway. In whatever form or shape.

Today is April 25 – the day of the Carnation Revolution. Festa!

In 1974 it was over. Then the wonderful story of the flower girl in Lisbon happened, which ended the tension. With that, the dictatorship of Marcello Caetano, the successor of the infamous António Salazar, was over.

The go-ahead was given just after midnight, by broadcasting a song by singer Zeca Afonso: “Grândola, Vila Morena”. “O Movimento dos Capitães” – the group of revolutionaries who planned and carried out the coup faced the government forces in Lisbon.

Although everyone had to stay indoors, there were a lot of people on the street. Flower sellers stood in the square. The tension was unbearable – two parties facing each other; when would the shooting begin? One flower girl took one of her red carnations and stuck it into the barrel of a soldier’s rifle close to her. With that, the tension was broken, and the entire revolution was settled peacefully.

This is the romantic (highly simplified) version of the story of the Carnation Revolution

There are a lot of versions of how that Carnation ended up in the barrel of that gun, but I think this is a cute one. José – affectionately known as Zeca – Afonso is now about a saint. Rightly so, because he ran a lot of risk if things went wrong.

No one could have foreseen that it would go off without bloodshed. And when that happens, it is tears-in-your-eyes beautiful. Just like years later in Czechoslovakia. A square full of lighters in Prague. Very moving, and a great reason to celebrate!

Celebrating will probably not happen that much now

Corona throws a spanner in the works everywhere. Now the gratitude of not living under a dictatorship is not so much alive anymore among the Portuguese; too many generations have grown up in freedom, and have no idea what that is like. Perfect, let it be that way for ever!

But the Portuguese really love to party, and they can do that very well. A (small) square, a (small) band, dancing, good food (gastronomia), and lots of beer. Let ‘m do their thing. Throughout Portugal, there are usually parties everywhere from this time of year, big or small, all through summer.

Fine, we’ll adapt. Just like those people then, just like the capitães – we won’t let it get us down!

Then we’ll throw a party ourselves, at home, with some nice music.

Every week on Sunday morning you will find a new blog in your mailbox. Every week you spend a few minutes in Portugal. Just on your own comfortable sofa.

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We moved here in 2000 from Rotterdam, Holland to the Termas-da-Azenha, Portugal. A big step, especially with two small children. We are busy to rebuild one of portugals cultural heirlooms: Termas-da-Azenha, an old spa which has been turned into several holiday homes, rooms and a small campsite, with a swimming pool, games like pingpong, foossball, pool, boardgames, and a FancyDressingRoom. You’ll find mosaics and paintings everywhere.

The old bathhouse is going to be a museum, where you can see how things have changed. The healing mineral water still runs through the baths, and is still of an excellent quality. Since 2018 we call ourselves the first B&B&B in the world – Bed & Breakfast & Bathrobes. You can buy a unique bathrobe or kimono in our webshop, or order one tailor-made, completely to your wishes.

Each week a little blog about what is happening around us. An easy read. A few minutes in another world. A little about what it going on in Portugal. If you plan your holiday to Portugal, it might be a nice preparation. We have some nice special offers on our site.

You can subscribe to this blog. You’ll get it every weekend in your mailbox.

On Sunday morning we publish it on our Facebook, on Pinterest, and on monday on LinkedIn.