Here’s the thing about the Algarve in summer: days tend to swelter, but once the sun goes down, it usually cools off and we end up with wonderful nights. (“Cool” being a relative term, of course — we’re still sleeping under nothing but a sheet.) Thus everyone tends to hibernate during the afternoon, and come out at night. Cafés stay open late, people sit outside with beers and munchies until all hours, and the rugby and football teams don’t even start their play until 21:00. Here in our complex, the café’s outdoor seating is packed with people and their very noisy children until midnight, making it impossible to even think about sleeping before then.
We love the cool nights. We hate the noise. But right now, even the noisy kids aren’t the worst. That honor goes to the summer music festival.
It happens on several weekends each summer: various musical groups playing with enthusiastic amplification, in all sorts of genres. We’ve heard everything from folk music to death metal, and we’ve heard it loudly. Closing all of our windows doesn’t really help, and we don’t want to anyway — we need that nighttime breeze to cool down our flat in preparation for the next day’s heat. So we’re stuck with the windows open and the music penetrating every corner…
The Portuguese love their cool night air in the summer, and they take full advantage of it. (In Lisboa, there are dance clubs that don’t even get going until 01:00 or 02:00.) And if the music on offer were something along the lines of, say, classical or jazz or even electronica, I’d be sitting out on the veranda enjoying it. But as I type this, we’re being subjected to some cheesy pop with a lot of accordion, and all I can think is that we’ve got another four hours of it.
Time for a drink.