Inspired by friends who mentioned the existence of Rose Quartz caves in Portugal, the boys and I went on an Earth Day excursion to try and find one of these.
Internet research showed the existence of a Rose Quartz quarry within a 10km radius from where are currently staying. It also happened to be the site where in 1917 Mary made her appearance. Magical coincidence?
Our bike ride took us along a beautiful road up the mountain, with majestic views and interesting agricultural creations whose function eludes us. These structures are hollow on the inside, but I could not detect a door. If anyone has a suggestion as to their use?
The road became quite steep, to the point that we not only biked but also had to push our bikes, though Lief turned it into a fun exercise to learn how to do a 'wheely'. Lief's Tip of the Day: Learning how to ride your bike on one wheel is easier when you go uphill as gravity assists rather than hinders the process:
When we arrived at the designated place for the Rose Quartz Quarry, there was unfortunately none to be found. Instead we found a Quartz Museum, but due to COVID-19, that was closed.
We continued to bike up the mountain to see if we would have better luck. This is where we found Mary towering above a church (Santuário de Nossa Senhora da Paz in Barral), mounted on a huge block of crystals:
We took a break and created an altar for our offerings to Mother Mary and Mother Earth:
Disappointed not to have found a crystal cave, we went back down to the site of the Quartz Museum. This is built near the site of Mary's apparition in 1917. A small shrine temple has been erected. Its walls embedded with large crystals and surrounded by large statues of Jesus, the Holy Spirit and an Angel mounted on huge blocks of crystals. Beautiful species of large rosy white crystals placed in the surrounding gardens.
Though the boys were disappointed not to be able to do their own crystal hunting in a cave, we all enjoyed the treat to be back on our bikes again and to take in scents and sights of the beautiful natural environment of northern Portugal. We hope to continue to travel and explore other parts of Portugal on our bikes in May.
A difference from a month ago is that the roses have come into bloom. Most Portuguese gardens have rose bushes in many different shades and colours. We brought one wild rose home for our home altar and added it to our daily Oracle message created by the same sweet friend who suggested the Rose Quartz Caves. So grateful for her suggestion and for the friends who helped me locate this so close to our home, for these were perfect messages and explorations for Earth Day:
I surround myself with the beauty of Mother Earth
I am free of worry
I feel a deep sense of Peace