TE19 Iberian Adventure

Passing Time in Portugal

cared for him after her mother Khadijah died. Thus, she became known as ‘Umm Abiha - the mother of her father’.

“My Grandmother was religious,” Pedro lit a cigarette, “Her generation was touched by Fatima.”

The conversation turned to the apparitions outside the town of Fatima, where the Virgin Mary appeared to shepherd children in 1917. “Humanity lies in a state of destitution and hunger. The world is in danger and we have come to the Queen of Peace to ask for a gift that only God can give.” 70,000 witnessed the “miracle of the sun”, reported throughout the country. The sun seemed to dance in the sky as they stared directly into the colossal stream of light.

“90 years later and it’s still gripped the cultural imagination.” Pedro confirmed.

“Perhaps God is attracted to the bleak backwaters.”

“Something for you to write about,” Grandad chuckled.


Peaceful streets led to the town hall and a square lined with tasteful bars and open-air cafes.

A hammer and sickle flag hung from an upper window. 177

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