Peter's Blog

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Monday, 31 May 2010

A visit In November 2009 and my son came with me

We only had two days from landing to take off so a five hour drive each way to the airport took so much out of the trip. Despite that  we made the most of the time we had in Gois.

The first night we went to the May Tay for a drink and to meet a friend. Shortly after we arrived at the May Tay my son asked if i wanted a game of Pool well i have never played Pool in my life.  During our time we got talking to an English guy from the Algarve. Dave is the owner of, they where fitting a new heat system the first to be fitted in Portugal. Who i missed was Simon Sharp who is well known on a Forum i watch.

Just as Dave and his son left my mate came to see use, he and my son took to each other and i feel sure that they are now friends. The reason i came over with my son is that we are not just Dad and son but i like to think we are also friends. It was important to me that he knew where i was going to move to and what it would be like for me living on my own. Also to meet some of the people i have got to know over the time i have been coming to Gois.

Sunday, 30 May 2010

A visit In November 2009 and not alone

Towards the end of November 2009 i visited Gois again but this time i came over with my Son. As there where no flights i had to fly into Faro airport and drive up 500Km to where i stay in Gois.

The car hire at Faro airport was about the best i have had. I used before at Porto Airport and found them the best to use. AT Faro the car hire is in the Lounge when you come out from the plane. Across the road as you come out of the Airport is a car part and the car is waiting there ready to drive away.

The drive north was uneventful Just 500Km of road mostly motorway. The difference being none of the bad driving found on the motorways in the UK. This time i did not have my Satnav so the trip was easy till i came to turn on the motorway and go inland. Once i got to Penacova it was easy as i had driven that road often.

The picture above is of a traffic island and at this point at Penacova is just a case of follow the road for about 26Km and it leads straight into Gois

Sunday, 23 May 2010

Credit where credit's due

Hi well it's about time i showed a little respect for a friend who without some of his pictures this Blog for now and for what's to come would not be what it is.

I was introduced to Richard by Diana and Terry because of my great interest in renewable energy and building an energy efficient house. I was lucky that Richard was an expert in a field that was of great interest to me.

Apart from the help Richard was and will be when i move to Vale Boa. Richard is also an expert photographer. Out of respect to him i should have asked permission to use his archive of Photo's

It came as quite a surprise to here that Richard and Patricia where to open an Estate agency in Gois. I envy the way that Patricia uses words, how i wish that i could use the English language in the way that Patricia does, in particular her Blog on here own website.

Saturday, 22 May 2010

Just look what can be missed

Just look what can be missed.

A good title for this next part of my story, It's ok planning a move to another country but consider what you miss before you make the final move.

It's not just in the UK that has Bonfire night,

I received the pictures a few days after Bonfire night 2009. My mate Dave decided to have a Bonfire night party. After the rain of previous days it seemed that on the day of the fire the rain had stopped. So the fire was on.

Just because People make the move to another country doesn't mean that all that traditions that we have grown up with have to be forgotten. But for safety there was not fireworks. I am assured by Richard that the party went well. Next November i will be living in Vale Boa so roll on Bonfire night.

Monday, 17 May 2010

Peter's walk

The country side around Gois is like many other areas of Portugal stunning and spectacular and is as good as any where in the UK. The Peace, the Solitude, the Views and a sense of Calm what more could you want?. After living and working in Liverpool i look forward to the peace i find as soon at i get to Gois.

Every day during my stay i always start my day with a walk in the morning. My walk starts at the bridge that spans the river Ceira just above where the river Bar is to be found.

I then walk along the side of the river towards the village of Carcavelos.

Part way alone the river is a Weir at a place where the old buildings have been restored to provide somewhere to change for swimming. Behind the weir the water is deep enough to swim in the crystal clear waters.

In the above picture you can see the road that leads to Carcavelos and in the background you can see the mist over the hills in the distance. At the point in the road that i stop and have a short rest before i return to Gois is a small wall where i stop and sit. On the many times i have walked along this little road i have only seen one car pass me. As i sit on the i am always disturbed by a couple of dogs that are in an enclosure. These dogs just yap and yap for the time i sit. Once i move on they stop yapping and all is quiet again.

Saturday, 15 May 2010

A day out to see a Timber Frame house being built

I went out with my mate the Timber Frame guy to see a house his company was building just outside of Vila Nova Do Ceira. The drive to the house that is owned by Dave and is about 15Km from the centre of Gois. The road down to the house is very narrow and bumpy, but it's worth drive trip just for the views.

When i arrived Dave had just had the roof installed so the house was now water tight. The outside was just being clad in timber so as to blend into the countryside as the wood seasons. This is a house built just like many thousands across Europe.

Just look at that for a view, the only noise is from the wind, the birds singing and the water as it rushes over the rocks at the waters edge a peaceful a location

The upstairs walls of the old house had been taken down to the create a base that the new house could be built on. The house is insulated and meets all international regulations, so it should be nice and warm in the winter.

Across the front and side there is a deck to be built and when i comeback to this i will include the pictures i took at the time. One think stands out is how friendly everybody is who i have met. Dave is just like a mate i have known for years. since my first time i met Dave much has been done to the house but i will wait until i recount when i took my son to see the house and meet Dave.

Saturday, 8 May 2010

The day i called to see a friend and he was out

While i was out going to get my money back in Serta i used the time to call and see an friend in a place called Tomar. My friend Derek is a well known Legal estate agent in Tomar and is very well respected. I know  Derek from the various Forums we are both on and from his Radio show on a Saturday morning.

On my way to Serta i called into Tomar and found the offices of my friend Derek. As i walked in i saw a photo on the wall of a house that was close to being a ruin that i was interested in. This was the very first house i ever looked at when i started to search the property websites in  Portugal for a property.  

Just then a member of staff came over to say hello i pointed out to the young lady that this was the first house i looked at when i started my search for a property. I was shocked when she said that she knew my name must be Peter and she then pointed out that it was her house and she remembers the email i sent. Well we went next door to the cafe/ bar for a cool drink Ok so i had a Superbok and on a very hot day it went down very well see the picture below. Any way it seems that i had missed my chance to met Derek so i went over to Serta to get my money back " see the last story "

On my way back from Serta i called again to Tomar to see Derek but again i missed him as he was out doing what estate agents do. Never mind we will met but not before it's arranged next time. Don't forget Keep the Superbok in the fridge because i like it cold, very cold. I should also mention that i was calling without first contacting Derek. My time span was such i could not know where and when i would be able to call so i just called unannounced.

Friday, 7 May 2010

So easy to fall for a property

On the all Expat Forums there is always an advice section. When it comes to buying property there are things to do or you could end up losing everything.
  1. First thing to do is first find the area that you want to move to.  
  2. Second visit the area and get to know your way around.
  3. Find the local agents as they are the ones who have knowledge of the area and what's for sale.
  4. If a property looks  a bargain at the price offered then ask yourself why is it priced so low or why does it look such a bargain?

The property above is one i made all the mistakes anybody could make. I found this on a website owned by a company who only advertise but do not sell. This company puts you in touch with the owner//seller.

I was put in touch with the owner or so i thought was the owner it was just another illegal estate agent. If you look careful at the picture you can see how perfectly it's been painted. We apart from a new house the Portuguese don't seem to paint there houses.

After looking at the pictures on the website i contacted the owner. I asked for more pictures and quite soon the extra pictures arrived. The property seemed a bargain at only 30,000 euro's. I contacted the owner and made an offer of the full asking price. To make sure that i got the property i offered the owner a 1,000 euro deposit sent by bank transfer for him to reserve the property for me. The owner agreed and he then supplied his bank details for the bank transfer to go ahead and in due course i sent the 1,000 euro to the owners bank account. That was two weeks before i was due to fly over and meet with the owner and sign the promissory contract. Day's before i was due to fly i received an email to let me know that the property had been sold and that i could have my money back. It was at this point that i realized that i was not dealing with a legal estate agent. A legal estate agent would not have done this, taken a deposit and then sold to someone else.

Well i arranged to meet the agent to get my money back, i arranged to meet because i did not want to give my bank details as i was given  no reason to trust him.  We arranged to me in a bar by the river in a place called Setra at two pm in the afternoon. Well as two pm came the owner came over and introduced himself " no name as there is legal action going on but that's for another day ". well i got my 1,000 euro and drove back to Gois and considered how lucky i had been. At least i had my 1,000 euro back.

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

I found a plot of land

In the summer of 2008 i came across a plot of land in a village just above Gois. This plot of land was about 800m2 and the plot was on a gentle slope. The house next door had the land levelled so i knew that i could build a house. I contacted my mate the Timber Frame guy because i had designed a house that would sit into the back of the plot. The house i had designed was to be all on one level and partly built into the ground at the back. The build size was to be 164m2 and would have three bedrooms an en-suite.

I had taken my time over the plot of land wanting to make sure that it was legal to build on that there was power and water. I sadly took to long and when i wanted to make an offer the price had doubled in price helped by a multi national property company who need not be named. I am sure that the price will one day come down to a more realistic price or be placed with a local agent who knows there job. You can see the views from the plot and understand why it was special to me.

Early morning mist looking down the valley.

Monday, 3 May 2010

A meeting with a new Friend and an afternoon out

I was in the Pombalina Cafe/bar in the centre of Gois and i was having trouble asking for a cup of tea. The Pombalina is a little bar just up a small lane that leads up to the Town square and the local Camera office. I was helped by another English guy who introduced himself as Richard and that he lived local. After a little while i explained why i was in Gois and Richard  offered to take me out around the local area for a look around and to see some of what the area offered.

During the time we where driving we came across a little village where there was an old Olive press and sum buildings that the workers would use to rest while the olives where being pressed and the oil stored in barrels. The photos do not show really how beautiful the surrounding area is, i had never come across anything in the Uk to compare with some of the views that you find at almost every turn.

From my early days after just passing my driving test in October 1968 i had a passion for driving. A favourite place to drive to was the lake district and i am sure you will agree it is a beautiful part of the country. But when you start to drive around the various parts of Central Portugal as i have then you come across and find places of such natural beauty as these photos show.

Where would you find a river that has a man made weir built to create an area where the water is deep enough to swim in.

There is nothing better on a summers day that to spend it in the waters by the River Bar. A view from the River Bar across the beach and behind the weir where the water is crystal clear and inviting for a swim.