Certainly, those who walk near our people have heard this expression.
There is no island like ours with concerning the respect and the point of preserving and valuing these our ancient traditions.
The Feasts of the Holy Spirit, celebrated in the joyful and colourful Empires scattered throughout each parish, are lived intensely throughout eight weeks after Easter Sunday. The so-called functions and the Bodos are the centres of attention in the localities of the island.
Through the cobbled Portuguese streets, we could hear the organizers whistling and shouting “holy Bodo” in their open boxes, from where they take from the wicker baskets the traditional “house bread” and the tasty jug of red wine to offer to the neighbourhood.
Carnival Dances are celebrated in the Carnival period. The population of each parish joins and creates a popular theatre. Usually, they use some news from the Azores to have their moment of enjoyment. For three days, outsiders go out to the street or go to the halls (spaces that each parish gives in to commemorate this tradition – people’s houses, societies, associations) so as not to miss a laugh of the so-called “dances” or “bailinhos”.
From May until October the streets of the island give way to our brave cattle – the bullfights with the rope. The bull runs through the streets only tied by a rope, long and strong, controlled by the butlers. As usual, they wear a wide, comfortable white suit and a hat, already recognized by those who walk around, round and black. The doors of the houses are protected by wooden sticks and the umbrellas are opened to cap the bull – it is the moment of spectacle that many are waiting for.
During the change of the bull (4 in total) walk the usual proclaimers, with their wicker baskets, selling ice cream, bags of homemade chips and chocolates. To call the attention of the public loudly shout “Ora meich meich”. Impossible to forget!
The Sanjoaninhas, celebrations dedicated to São João, occupy the streets of Angra do Heroísmo during ten days of the month of June. During the day the streets give joy with the sound of our traditional “cantigas” and at night the columns are replaced by lights of different colours. Courts, musical concerts, bullfights (of square or rope), tasquinhas of tastings sporting events and fireworks are some experiences that we can live in these days.
In August, it is the turn of the neighbouring city to celebrate. The streets of the city of Praia da Vitoria are filled with young people from other islands and enthusiastic tourists to photograph every detail around them. Near the bay of Praia, we find the gastronomic fair: a must stop! Restaurants from different islands come together to give our tourists the experience of being local for a day.