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Pilgrimage of S. João
Pilgrimage of S. João

The Pilgrimage of S. João is a popular saint in Porto, like S. António is in Lisbon and S. Pedro in Vila Nova de Gaia. S. João is also known as lover saint or as matchmaker saint. And the Pilgrimage of S. João is coming on June! The Pilgrimage of S. João is celebrated in several Portuguese cities, Braga, Póvoa do Varzim, etc, but the city where the celebration is bigger is in Oporto, and makes  24 June is holiday. Although S. João Baptista is considered by many the “popular saint” of Invicta, the official  saint of Oporto is Nossa Senhora da Vandoma. But On the night of June 23, people come to streets to celebrate and we can find a lot of grilled sardines, bread, caldo verde, peppers and wine! Everyone comes out. The very old, the very young, all really all get out of the sofa to go out and party. It doesn’t matter if it is hot, cold, raining… people come out of their houses. One of the basil of the Pilgrimage of S. João and one of its symbols, is the hammer, a colorful plastic hammers or  garlic flower, used by people to hit (gently) on the heads of others. Hot air […]

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Nkosi sikelel’ iAfrika – God Bless Africa

“TRIBAL TANK” IN AFRICA Nkosi sikelel’ iAfrika – God Bless Africa – The oldest specimen of Australopithecus africanus (our closest species), together with many other hominids was found in south Africa (Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site) and dates 2.6 million years, reviving a quote from Nelson Mandela “… we are all Africans”. This makes of South Africa the birth of humankind. Ranked as the 28th world economy, and the 1st of Africa, it is the 25th biggest country in the world and 13 times bigger than Portugal. South Africa is a multicultural country, home to 52 millions of inhabitants and still considered a “rainbow” nation due to the deeply divisive policy of the apartheid. Broadly speaking and using local population statistical data approximately 79% of people are black, 9% are white descendants of Dutch, Germans and English, 3% are Asian, and 9% are “coloured” (the apartheid term for those of mixed descent). Beyond these are smaller but no less significant groups, descendants of Lebanese, Italian, Portuguese, Hungarian, and Greek settlers, as well as the estimated 130,000 strong Jewish community. In an attempt to recognise the cultural diversity of South Africa, the government recognised officially 11 languages, which makes the life of any public […]

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