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Bons Sons 2017

Photos: Ricardo Dias.

These are beautiful days, those lived in Cem Soldos, from August 11 to August 14.

I had never been there before.

But when I reached the village, on the festival’s first day, the clock would probably be close to 7 pm and then some. The light was naturally sweet, rosy… much like the cheeks of so many people who were already laughing out loud. A noise level higher than the houses around, which, just like all village houses, are small, flat… built according to the human scale. They are down-to-earth. The festival is also that way. Familiar, human, it makes it easier to be there. And because of that it’s more special than those other major festivals. Bons Sons tastes like the warmth of August, which rises as the sun sets itself. It smells like long afternoons and I swear that, if it happened to be located by the sea, it would be called Boas Ondas [Good Waves, in English].

Tiny lamps hanging from above are what light up the corners and there’s also a reddish Bandstand that assumes the role of a stage at the entrance. It has a Square that extends itself in the middle, encompassing two stages filled with people! There’s a Church, an old one, which for this occasion hosts the most genuine form of mass. It works as a stage and as a table for those who want to listen to Música Portuguesa a Gostar dela Própria. At the end of that same street, in Quintal Aleluia, the ever so famous dishes, vegetable pataniscas and migas, as mighty as they can be! Then we also have Farturas À Pina, Garagem da Vizinha and the Armazém, in order to travel way beyond through the screening of short films. Oh, and the windows! Did I already mention the windows? The privileged view that one has from Tia Maria to that whole party will make the day worth it. And Jogos do Hélder, a stand that, in the afternoon, makes us forget the 40 degrees felt in the shade, using tables made of sticks and storefronts. The kind of games to play with real people, without keypads and buttons and virtual reality.

I have yet to talk about the music, right? It’s just the best, made in our land. Yes, we have so much fun with Portuguese music, in Portugal. Capitão Fausto were the ones who enchanted boys and girls with their tunes out of Os Dias Contados, Filipe Sambado, along with Filipe Valentim, played on the altar with Band’Olim, plus the Singularlugar. Mão Morta knocked on our doors yet again to pay tribute to the 25th anniversary of ‘Mutantes’ and Throes + The Shine created a whirlwind of dust, feet and dirt right in front of the Eira stage, next to grandma’s house.

We never get tired there. We chat with people. In the afternoon we visit the dam and come back with kids who don’t want to miss a single beat and encounter friends for yet another round. There’s a lady holding a suspicious look… that’s because Sonoscopia decided to assemble this sort of mechanism, right at the Tarde ao Sol stage, where everyone can try the bell sound. And around 10 pm, we are already flaunting a knitted sweater, just to run away from a runny nose… the cold is approaching us and the wind is already whistling at the entrance of Eira stage. Between the Lopes Graça stage, we set sail towards Venus and Mars, where the work of art, authored by José Cid, lives. They hit our ears right in the proper spot, for some time, the guys of Orelha Negra, who get their business done. The night is still young and we have in our body and hips, in our soul and swing, the will to dance with Firma do Txiga.

On the last day, when we are about to become natives from that piece of land… nostalgia slowly starts to hit us. It comes through the singing voice of Valter Lobo. And, in the afternoon, Rodrigo Leão orchestrates our hearts with tenderness. Did I introduce you to Mrs. Maria José?! Oh, what am I thinking! She even danced with Octa Push, and Octa Push danced with her. It was something to behold. It was a beautiful festival… as real as one can get, for people of all ages to experience Bons Sons as a whole!

She’s 24 but believes that childhood lasts a lifetime. Maybe that's why she dreams of Spielberg movies and is passionate about picture books and cartoons. Born in Sines, she lives in Lisbon but has a tropical heart that takes her constantly to the other side of the Atlantic and Latin culture. She works as a copywriter in advertising and devotes herself to writing in her spare time – and that's where she loses herself, to find herself.

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