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help exchange   Host 37389
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Help Exchange

All Year: Yes
Area (ha): 3
Persons: 2
Category: Homestay
Host ID: 37389
Country: Portugal

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Last Updated: March 31, 2015

This is a small olive and fruit farm, in a secluded, beautiful place, with views of the mountains 40 miles away, and a pine forest behind the farm.

We are not overlooked at all, there are no street lights, no light pollution, no power lines, no cell towers, nothing, nada, the stars at night are breathtaking and the closeness to nature is wonderful, the wild pigs often come for a drink from our small lake at night, we have hoopoo's, cuckoos, magpies, and many small birds nesting, and usually have big birds of prey overhead, eagles or buzzards I guess.

I am 50, male, have a car, love this country and have lived here for one year. I am learning Portuguese presently and can help a little if you want to learn. I don't smoke, do drink alcohol, I am respectful and cool with LGBT people. My background was academic but I am retired now.

Here there are three stone houses, two converted to live in already and one a ruin, plus a lovely 5 metre yurt with wooden floor, stove, lockable door, solar power. There is a great stone fire circle for sitting out at night or cooking food. The accommodation for Helpxers will be the yurt or stone house, depending on preference and what suits us best at the time. There is also a Hennessy hammock if you want to go wild and sleep in the forest, which can be amazing.

Power is solar and a new 3kw system will be up before long, water is from the well and there are no mains services, this is pretty much off the grid, as much as this is possible these days. We get postal deliveries to the nearby town hall.

The farm is 10 mins walk from the nearest village which has 3 cafes, shops, church, taxi, bus services. The nearest large town is 20 kilometres away, as is the intercity train service.

There is internet access in the local cafe, if you want your own dongle this can be arranged at your expense, and we have 3G access if you have a smartphone. If on the other hand you are electro-sensitive, the ambient electro-smog is 5 or 6 millivolts per square metre, which is lower than almost anywhere in Europe, towns can be anything from 200 to 2000 millivolts, and if you are EMS I am happy to work with you to minimise our use of handhelds and wifi.

There is so much to do! The work is seasonal, as you'd expect, and each month or season there are different things, for example olive picking in the autumn. The land has been left unattended for years and offers all sorts of options for skilled or unskilled people, from planting trees, to fencing, paths, building a nature observation platform in the trees, to scrub clearance to.....etc!

Also at the moment we are engaged on construction, with a third stone house likely to be started in the autumn, and a sunken bath also in mind.

One word of warning - I am not a good cook, so if you are and would be happy for some cooking or suggestions on meal preparation to be part of your contribution, that would work out really well :-)

On food and drink stuff, I don't smoke, drink occasionally, don't do other intoxicants but know people who do if this is your thing, but ask that you do not use anything on my property as whilst the law here is tolerant, the locals don't necessarily share this view, and visible drug taking in a very conservative place is not cool. Smoking anywhere near me is a no no, I hate it, sorry but WTF?

I'd love to hear from you, if you are pretty easy going and think this may be a good stop on your journey drop me a line.

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