By 9.25 this morning we were on West Wittering Beach .
By 10 ,John had fired up the barbecue and was cooking up sausages and fried onions for our butties .
By 11,30 we were reading the papers ( did you read the interesting article about Walberswick and Rennie Mackintosh ?)
and by 12.30 we were immersed in The Umbando religion .
let me explain …a large group of Portuguese speaking people gathered next to us on the beach . They put up their gazebo and produced the most amazing array of food and drink ( not that I was watching ) .
Then after eating they drew a huge circle in the sand ,placed pebbles all round the circle ,placed their big drums in the centre and started playing them .Then then took a huge white board and started sewing blue fabric onto it and embroidering it and sewing flowers into the embroidery .It was lovely -I was fascinated .
I got speaking to some of the children , who introduced me to the Priest ( in beach gear ) . He told me that they were Brazilian and followers of Umbanda .I’d never heard of it .So he explained that they were making a gift that they would offer to their (13 ?) spirits later in the day .He told me a lot more stuff ,but I cannot remember it .
We said good-bye and went for a walk around the headland
Roll on a few hours and we are back on the field ,tucked in behind Emerald ,setting up for our second barbecue of the day and we hear it – the drums and now the chanting ,and the praying and the kissing of the floral surf-board shaped offering .While the children continue to kick a football around , the adult Umbandos are dressed in long white cotton dresses are are back in their circle in preparation of their offering . It was quite surreal and a dam good way to kick -back ,wave hello and enjoy a couple of dam good minty lamb cutlets and a corn on the cob .