We are never too sure what to expect from Algarvian fairs and events, they can be wonderful, great fun or a non-event! So yesterday we had no idea what to expect at XI Feira da Perdiz in Martim Longo, I was though reasonably optimistic as hunting is the main occupation in the Alcoutim district, and there was a detailed programme. We knew though never to arrive on time, and to expect the unexpected. Which in this case was the lack of fresh game for sale! I had envisaged from a hunting fair that there would be lots of fresh produce on sale alongside hunting equipment. There was plenty of cheese, dried meats, cakes, jam and wonderful country crafts, there was no fresh game. It seems in Portugal they cook it all instead as there was a large marquee with numerous Tasquinhas inside serving traditional hunting dishes. Looked fabulous.
We made the fatal mistake though of deciding it was too early to eat at 12noon, and so by the time we had finished our shopping in the main hall and returned to the tasquinas at 12:30 (which still felt early) every seat was taken. Oops! Never mind the ‘Inicio da Corrida de Galgos’ was happening outside.
I am not normally a lover of dog races, but these greyhounds were clearly having a great time. And it was all so relaxed with the occasional dog escaping to explore the area, huge happy faces on the dogs faces at the end of each race and the ‘hare’ so obviously handmade and not a hare.
After watching a couple of heats we pondered what to do next. There were other events later in the afternoon which might be good to watch, however by this point we were hungry! And so we decided to leave all the fun of the fair and head off to Alcoutim. Only a few miles away and we knew an excellent place to lunch.