The Portugal Years: Rock-a-Bye-Baby, the Waiting Time

The private hospital in Lisbon.

The private hospital in Lisbon

Within two weeks I was certain that the baby was rockin’ and rollin’. Especially right around the time I should have been getting up every morning. It seemed like everyone had a cure for those queasy moments. I settled for a tin of crackers by my side of the bed where I could nibble a few before I had to stand up. By and by it passed and I had more energy. Meanwhile, I started reading all of the books I could find about the upcoming event!

We were amazed and dazed during this prenatal time. We could hardly believe it. We talked about baby names among other things. Harry magnanimously said I could name the baby if it was a girl, and he would name the baby if it was a boy. I let him think that.

Other times we discussed where we would go for prenatal care and the birth. Some of the Americans flew back to the states to have their babies. Some preferred the Red Cross Hospital where the personnel spoke English. Harry felt we would be well taken care of in the Hospital Particular de Lisboa (a privately run hospital as opposed to the national health care clinics). He had me call the hospital and make an appointment.

Doutor Purificação saw us the next week. She scheduled  an ultra sound and determined that the baby would be born around mid-August. We could see the heartbeat clearly, but not much else. Ultra sound was a relatively new diagnostic tool, and fairly primitive at the time.

Portuguese friends and Americans were excited with us. The field director’s wife made a beautifully embroidered maternity dress that was perfect for the summer weather. My parents began to make plans to fly to Portugal after the baby arrived. My Angolan neighbor was concerned that I was too thin and several times brought meals to me. I was still queasy when she brought a squid stew. The tentacles waved at me from the bowl, but I thought I needed to at least try it, and it was fabulous.


Meanwhile, António Figueira was marrying his sweetheart, Ana Maria. So, on April 18th, 1981 so  we rode down to Beja to his the church there. The families had been cooking and baking for days getting read for the festivities. It was an amazing, but tiring day. The weather was warm, and we stopped at a café on the way home. It was the only coffee I drank during the waiting time.


What is the best wedding food you’ve ever eaten?

About these ads


  1. Other than the dry meat, I can’t remember as the food wasn’t always as memorable as the drama that took place behind the scenes of a few weddings I have attended. :-)

    Like this

    1. Yes. There is always drama at weddings. Mine was the florist never showed up until five minutes before the ceremony was to begin. *sigh*

      Like this

    2. Pst. She would have magically tripped down the stairs right after the last rose went up.

      Like this

    3. How often does that happen?

      Like this

  2. Kevin Spencer · ·

    My Mom made the wedding cake for Charlotte and I, Aunt’s and cousins pitched in to make the reception goodies for the reception. But that cake, that cake was awesome. It was by far the absolute best tiered, decorative, wedding cake I’ve ever had.

    Like this

    1. Your mom must have been an amazing cook! I don’t suppose you have a picture?

      Like this

  3. :lol: They waved! :lol: Oh dear, it would have taken courage to try, but it does look tasty!

    The professor, you know, hasn’t been to too many weddings!!

    Like this

    1. It was really good. I’m a fan – though I haven’t had any since I left Portugal mostly because it’s hard to find. I also learned to make stuffed squid.

      Like this

  4. I didn’t know you were (and I guess I was too sort of) at Tia Anna’s wedding! How awesome.

    That stew. Wow. You are a brave and awesome Mommy! :D

    Like this

    1. Yes, we were. Tia Lilia was there, too.

      Like this

    2. It was a party! We should have another one!

      Like this

    3. I liked Portuguese parties.

      Like this

    4. The only one I remember is my birthday party and that is probably just because it’s on VHS!

      Like this

    5. They just didn’t seem so overwhelming.

      Like this

    6. Less pressure. Americans seems to put out a group feeling of comparison. Portuguese just seem to like you the way you are!

      Like this

  5. Beautiful photos of food! Loved this entry about your upcoming little one! As for wedding food, the times I’ve had it, it wasn’t nearly this nice-looking!

    Like this

    1. Thank you for reading. The food was great. The Portuguese have such a sense of community.

      Like this


A Memoir of Lusitania

comics, pop culture and related topics

The Punchy Lands!

~ tales and stories and...the professor... ~

Strait Up Word

There are no shortcuts to truth in the Word of God.

FictionFan's Book Reviews

Reviews of books...and occasional other stuff.

Secret Diary Of PorterGirl

A Memoir of Lusitania

Petals Unfolding

The Embrace of Love ~

vic briggs

A writer adrift

Kristen Lamb's Blog

We Are Not Alone

A Memoir of Lusitania

Jamie the Very Worst Missionary

A Memoir of Lusitania

The Nicki Daniels Interview

mostly awesome, most of the time

Redline: Live to Drive!

To share my passion of motorsports to all my readers! To get people of all ages and income levels into the absolute best vehicle possible for their specific needs and to make driving enjoyable every single day!

La La Rapariga

A funny girl with a bubby personality and a love for all creative things.

Secret Diary Of PorterGirl

The everyday adventures of the staff & students of Old College

Fifty Shades of Jazz

Exploring Mindfulness Meditations & Conversations on Jazz


So many things to say, so little time!

Extreme Mom

Anything that can and will happen

The Gourmand Traveller

A blog about food.

Life in the Concrete Jungle

It's All About the Corporate Hood Grind

Susan Irene Fox

Jesus follower, new Christian, unfinished human

Tip of My Tongue

where the wild words are


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 552 other followers

%d bloggers like this: