Sunday, 4 October 2009

All the presidente's men

In turns out there are two parties contesting the forthcoming elections for presidente of the conselho of Lajes das Flores and junta da freguesia (parish council) of Fajã Grande - the orange t-shirt lot and the other lot.

The other lot are Luis the veterinario's lot referred to previously but the orange t-shirt lot's tardiness in getting going (their posters only started going up last week whereas the other lot's have been up for ages now) is made up for by the verve of their campaign.

The orange t-shirt lot also have a campaign tune which grates marginally less on the ears as it's blasted from loudspeakers mounted on pick-up trucks trundling up and down the road. In fact one lot - a completely different lot (I think) - has hi-jacked the theme tune from the West Wing. Another lot has the Russian national anthem, bizarrely enough. But I don't think it's either of our lots (orange t-shirt or other). I digress.

Anyway, the other lot have responded with a new set of campaign posters showing Luis the veterinario in a sober dark suit. I thought I had a picture of this but I don't and it's too dark now to go out and take one but, anyway, this was as nought compared with the orange t-shirt lot's electoral trump card - bribing the voters.

In the course of a particularly exuberant parade up the village street this afternoon, marching to the tune of fife and drum, they were handing out goodie bags containing the treasures pictured below:-

Now, I'm a sucker for a goodie bag and this was a quality one: not only was the bag itself functional and reusable but it contained a t-shirt (white, mysteriously), a cigarette lighter, two inflatable - er - biffing things (the kids in the parade - for it was very much a family affair - were enthusiastically biffing each other over the head with them) and - best of all - three pencils with rubbers on the end (my existing ones have worn so far down that they've begun to scratch the paper when you try and rub something out).

So that's my vote well and truly sold to the orange t-shirt lot. Unless and until the other lot hand in a goodie bag containing (at the least) a pad of small Post-It notes (the small 3 x 2cm ones, mark you, not the big ones), a magnifying glass the dimensions of a credit card and a tube of tomato purée. In that case all bets would be off.


Kathie said...

Re your first photo (the billboard): I can't determine offhand which party it's for, but did you happen to notice what, or rather who, is missing? Hint: If Neil doesn't catch it, I'm confident that Carol and Baby Chou will identify the glaring omission immediately!

BTW, there IS a Communist Party in the Azores, which may well explain if you're hearing "The Internationale" -- with which I imagine most folks of a certain age are familiar, thanks to the televising of the Olympic Games in our youth (specifically, Soviet medal domination in particular sports).

Marisa Fagundes pereira said...

No women, that's unusual nowadays.Did you know that the first woman elected to become a mayor in the Azores (Graciosa -December 1982))was born in Fajã-Grande Flores? My mother - Maria Leónia Fagundes (Pereira).
She died suddendly 11 years ago.
I hope Víctor will win, he's a great guy, and a good friend.

Kathie said...

Parabéns, Marisa, you are so sharp-eyed. Your mother was a real pioneer -- tudo legal! No doubt you still miss her terribly; I'm so sorry for your loss.

Sorry for my ignorance, but who's Victor?

BTW, my second cousin's grandmother Leopoldina ("Pauline") was born a Fagundes in Northern California, to Francisco ("Frank") and Virginia Fagundes. We don't know which island(s) they were from, but since Leopoldina married a man from Fajãzinha das Flores (my grandfather's younger brother), I wonder if her family hailed from around there originally. What do you think?

Marisa said...

Kathie, Víctor is the GREAT one at the photo, eheheh, he was born in the USA, but he came to Flores when he was very young and he likes it very much. He's parent's return to the mother island, but his older brothers and family live in New England. As for your family you should ask João Gomes Vieira. This summer i found a book at my grandparents in Fajã, from 1931, about the portuguese babies born in california, maybe there is a relative there. Next year i'l donate the book to the museum in Flores.(Fagundes is a tipical name from Flores and Terceira, although exists in the other islands.

Paulo Ramos said...

It's not "presidente of the conselho of Lajes das Flores and junta da freguesia" but "Presidente da Câmara Municipal das Lajes das Flores" e "Junta de Freguesia", wich are different things. Lajes das Flores is a "concelho" (not a "conselho". "Conselho" is an advise that you give to a person") composed by some "freguesias". Each concelho has is own "Câmara Municipal" and each freguesia has is own "Junta de Freguesia". A "distrito" (that now you don't have in Azores but used to have until 1974) has several concelhos. Example: until 1974, you had 3 distritos in Azores: Horta, Angra do Heroísmo e Ponta Delgada. Horta distrito had the following concelhos: Horta(Faial), Madalena, Lajes do Pico and São Roque do Pico (Pico), Vila Nova do Corvo (Corvo) and Santa Cruz das Flores and Lajes das Flores (Flores). There is no Presidente do Distrito. Each distrito has a Governador Civil, but it's a different thing. So, in Azores you have Ponta Delgada, then Concelhos and then Freguesias.