Fatima- Aljustrel, close to my heart

I am not religious, I believe in doing good and self-improvement is my sole motivation in life. That’s what I strive for. Don’t have any ambitions or desire to amass wealth or receive recognition. There are certain rules I live by and certain expectations and every day I try to achieve them. At the end of the day, there is an inner dialogue that either pats me on my back for being able to achieve all that I had set out to do, or it chides me for making a mess of the whole deal. I am happy just being able to achieve my daily goals, that to me is a successful day.
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Fatima holds a very important place in my life. People want to go there as they believe in the miracle that happened there. I had the chance to go there and I wasn’t even aware of its history. 3 little kids apparently saw the apparition of Virgin Mary making it a holy place for the believers. I walked the holy path, saw the old and the new cathedral, even met the niece of one of the kids (Jacinta’s) – a very old lady, probably 99 or so who let me pick olives off trees in her garden. People walk on their knees from the New Cathedral to the old one and light these wax candles and ask for their wishes to be granted. I had a wish as well and decided to light a candle. I wasn’t losing out on anything being a non-believer. My grand-mum was very ill and I didn’t want her to suffer anymore than she already had, so I wished for her peaceful demise. Her time was near and it was a matter of days, even thought it was something my heart wasn’t ready to accept, my mind was saying the opposite. My wish was granted. Ever time I look through my pictures,the frame of mind I was in that day pops up in the forefront and takes me back in time. Hence the reason for taking so many pictures. It keeps the memories, the good, the sad and the funny ones alive. I am lucky to have visited places people wish they did. This place is special to me as I felt close to my grand-mum, we were connected even though we were so far away from each other.

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