The Original House

The original house must be well over 100 years old and it has some incredible features and unusual rooms. It’s hard to describe the layout and the purpose of each room as it has changed over the years, so bare with me.

We have both an upstairs and downstairs living room (I know, right?) that we have dubbed the ‘Winter Sitting Room’ upstairs and the ‘Castle Room’ downstairs. We have a wine press, although it lacks it’s original instruments, an office, a beautiful library, and an odd room without purpose (you’ll see what I mean when you see the picture). To confuse things further, in 2015 we converted part of the original house into a self-contained apartment that we are going to rent out as a holiday let.

This is our downstairs living room, or Castle Room. It hasn’t progress much since we moved in because we’ve been working on other parts of the house. But we have installed a wood burner and the village carpenter made some shutters for us.

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A long long time ago this room used to house the livestock, such as sheep and goats and maybe a pig or two. The fireplace wasn’t there then as is a recent addition to the house.

Adjacent to this room is the wine press. Let’s take a look at that next.


When we first arrived the floor was filthy with sand from the granite and it had hundreds of spider webs from one side of the room to the other. What the heck are you supposed to do with this room? Make wine? Maybe one day! All of the instruments that were required have now gone – such as the weights and the press itself.

We’ve been told that the grapes go in at the top where they are pressed and then the wine flows out through the gap on the bottom left. What happens after that is a guess, as my knowledge of wine making is just as good as the next person’s. That’s one to learn for the future, for sure.

This is the upstairs living room, or Summer Sitting Room, it’s directly above the Castle Room. This room suffered the most from wood worm and was fumigated in 2011. The little dust piles went away after a year but in 2015 unfortunately they came back. We’ve had the room fumigated again and hopefully that’ll be the end of it.

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Unsurprisingly, the majority of our furniture from our living room in England ended up in this room. We don’t use this room as much as we probably should. We love how cosy it is with the fire in the Castle Room so we tend to snuggle up in there.

Adjacent to this room is the office, the room that has no purpose, and the library. Here’s the office (still a work in progress):

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This room is directly above the wine press. The floor is not very sturdy and we currently don’t use it for anything, hence ‘the room without purpose’. We have been told that long ago this room was used for storing potatoes.

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Comments

    • Eve
    • August 16, 2015
    Reply

    I read about Poppy. We too have a black dog (German Short-Haired Pointer x Labrador). He is only 7 months old and would lick you to death, but many Portuguese give him a wide birth as they pass by. The Portuguese believe that they are the dogs that kill. My neighbour says that they are crazy in the head and likely to turn on you. This seems very odd as there is of course the breed 'Portuguese Water Dog' which is black! It appears that in England also there is lots of ancient folklore about black dogs – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's classic was based on stories of a black beast that roamed the moor. Apparently according to old beliefs, he who shouts or curses a black dog may die. So I hope everyone will be nice to our little puppy!

      • Laura
      • August 16, 2015
      Reply

      Hi Eve! That's really interesting and I think you're spot on. The Portuguese we see when out and about tend to be quite affectionate towards our little Spaniel but won't even want to go near Poppy. Our Portuguese friends are now used to them and know that they're gentle. Thank you for posting and I hope you enjoy reading my blog :)

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