For something you have to love the earth…

In the travel stories of our compatriots, there were some who, above water, exposed themselves to visible and unrecommended dangers. Suddenly, unexpectedly, the sea threw the boats in the direction of the rocks. Screaming, fuss, confusion. Fortunately for some of them, the future success, and the strength of perseverance, justify the price they paid for it. Among the enlightened, between misfortunes and glory, let us recall the exemplary case of José Manta, born in Coto, in Picoto, on January 18, 1846. This was a terrible year, with a drought and infested with potato pests. Three months after Jose’s birth, taxes and cemeteries helped fuel the outpouring of hatred from Minho women against the head of government, Costa Cabral. A repeat of the riots, which would bring together a coalition of enemies, from the far left to the far right, would force Cabral to resign. As for Jose, few have noticed the child born to two marketers in Coto. When they moved north, the exhibitions of José Douro’s parents did not cross. With an air of affair, tired of arguing, and selling straw hats at fairs in the area, Francisco Silva and Maria Rosa did not have much time to take care of their son. Poor family, not too vain, rough to the touch. Jose hardly had time to go to school.
Several years later, on April 25, 1926, the poor boy was posthumously honored in his homeland. Jose hardly went to school. He received small, revealing doses of letters, and did not know whether his parents were reasonably satisfied with his low and mediocre education. But outside of school, in a virtuous arc, Jose worked small miracles during his life. Wisdom has become simpler and more practical. In 1926, a bust of him was placed in the church treasury. One day, fortunately, Jose stopped walking in a sad place, barefoot and lazy, began to put on his nightgowns and wear gold watches. He had become so rich on the other side of the sea that he used to give great alms to the poor and destitute in his first village. Count Garcia of Couto has become, contemplating the past, and its shadows, as if they were a rising light. We can imagine Jose in Provincetown, on the edge of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, catching whales instead of cod. Here is Jose beside whaling boats, Drone Holmes, Fred, Elmer, vaguely remembering his parents at the fairgrounds, selling silly hats from one land to another, at fairs without colors and animation, his bad childhood, the unlikely outcome of his long existence. Jose died far from El Coto, but he used to send money to maintain the church and arrange the cemetery which led to the misfortune of Costa Cabral, who fell into the divine surprises of the Minho women. The death given by Jose will, years upon years, carry many dead to Cocoges Cemetery. Such was the case for Antonio Joaquim, in the summer of 1923, when the most famous Portuguese chemist of the time could not resist a heart attack. A hospital for the land, the dream of Luis Ribeiro and the Countess of Libania, will also be a justification for the parting of the devout Jose Manta for money.
José is remembered in April 1926, many years after his death on the East Coast of America, in Provincetown, and can also recount some of his wanderings around the world. These, those, the many lucky trips he made. And in new endeavors these, or those more disastrous voyages, may always appear across the seas. Jose left school early to earn a living. It looked like an animal, half a century ago, dead as soon as it came into the bay aboard the Brig. He was ten years and nine months old and was doing his best, clumsy and deceitful. Experts were well aware of the curse of crypts. A boat ride into the bay was not much of a problem for the poor and miserable, like Jose. It can be a terrifying thing, stained, like old slaves, in the darkness of basements. Someone who knows José, in his ruthless manner, described a agonizing crossing, from Porto to Bahia, surrounded by rather small rats and less capricious rats. The chatty boy while watching felt pain and the opposite fate. The days seemed like years, and the nights were centuries, with Jose aboard the Brig. He docked in the great city that once tempted Darwin, in 1832, when he disembarked there aboard the Bragel. Baia, the wonderful city in which the Countess of Pena Lunga was born and where the Bento-yeets were wise to enrich themselves. Where Jose, in his depiction of misery, did not stay long, nearly a full year working dimly in Jose do Paso’s warehouse, along with three black slaves.
The bay was not a big problem for our whaler. It wasn’t as generous to José Manta as Rio with Albino and Garcia. Despite everything, the first capital of Brazil helped him to pursue a fixed idea. José made some savings and, after six years in Bahia, returned to Couto de Cucujães. He was not flattered. He had solemn vows to try and fulfill. On March 14, 1864, after pledging a pocket watch for 11 pounds, he left for London. It was the founding year of Diario de Notícias and the first serious census of the population of the kingdom. We accurately arrived at 3,829,618 inhabitants. Eca de Quiros would then wander around Coimbra, having a nightly turmoil with Antero, plotting in the Sociedade do Raio, and preparing for coups such as the Rolinada coup. The future king was born d. Carlos the year before and his birth was the excuse not to give Academy students the usual pardon for the act. Rolim de Moura and his prime minister, the Duke of Lully, were in April and May the target of student ridicule at the carnival. As it was, two years before, rector Basilio, a tassel-and-cape Caesar, that Eka saw this adherence to strict and uncompromising academic discipline, and harsh punishments for those who did not respect it. But we will not follow Antero and Ica when they leave Coimbra in protest, bound for Porto, on the tumultuous Freedom Train. José Manta’s itinerary was more complicated until he reached London with a few pounds of the pawned watch. The flourishing of student speech was of little use to the London adventure of our fellow countryman, little literate and singing.
Jose arrived in London without having time to assess what awaited him. He had little time to wipe off the sweat. In the early sixties, one of his compatriots was living happily in England. Sebastiao Pinto Light, who had married five years earlier, at Cocoges, on December 18, 1855, was a niece of Bahia, Libya. The uncle was forty, and the niece was fifteen. The couple lived in London in 1861 at 71st Avenue in Hampstead. In a shared house with other family members from Lebanon, the widowed mother, Carlota, her brother Giulio and some of her nephews. A large house, Sebastiao’s and Liberian house, with housekeeper, cook, assistant cook, maid, square, and footman. So, the future Countess of Penha Longa, who in 1860, out of respect for the dead, continued not knowing the amount of her inheritance.
At the age of twenty, a Lebanese woman made her first will, the year her father died. He did not marry for love at the age of fifteen. Picture her in black, turning on the lights in a huge auditorium at 71st Avenue. Libanya was an educated, without delusion, who received from her father a dowry of twenty thousand kings, under a prenuptial contract. After the exchange, ninety conto de Reis. With the apps, he still doesn’t know how much wealth he’s actually reached. In 1860, he began to imagine where some of these assets might be generously applied. In 1864, the heroes changed, we found Jose Manta on one of the streets of London. The writer in the bay was still unlucky. She hadn’t sunk yet, but the pounds on the watch were bleeding. He couldn’t play as he wanted. Jose was penniless, he didn’t know anyone, and he couldn’t speak English. Since it was his problem, he thought that he would not be punished for it.

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