Just what do I do with my Time?

Algarve Life - Amanda Gleaves
3 min readMay 7, 2023


I have missed a few days — been so busy.

I am nobody so why would you want to read anything I write, right?
To be honest I am writing for me. I want to practice writing as much as I can, and an online diary seems like the way to go.

So who am I and what exactly do I do?

I came to Portugal to live in 1989. I learned the language within the first year. I have two children and I have been separated from my ex for 10 years, after a 20 year relationship. (More about that in another post.)

I want to write about my experiences here as I think they will show another side of life here. It hasn’t been easy but in today’s post I just want to say a little about what I do.


I am an artist. I actually hate saying that. A correct statement would be I like to paint and draw. I have made money from my artwork and it has paid my rent on occasions. But I don’t have a studio and I am not in dungarees covered in paint all the time — so I can’t really say I am an artist.

My thing is maps. I love drawing maps and I specialise in personal maps. Here is an example.

These maps can incorporate, where a person was born, went to university and worked, or even lived throughout their life. They are often commissioned as gifts.

I have done more commercial kind of work — but maps are the thing I really enjoy.


I also like singing. I can play the guitar a little but not like a pro! I am currently part of a duo, called Blue Cactus and also a six peice band called Straw House.

Both these projects are fairly recent. I have been with Straw House for nearly a year and with Blue Cactus for about six months.

They are both very different styles. Gig dates coming soon!

Before that I was trying it out on my own. I wrote a few songs too!

I have tried to be versatile throughout my life and have put my hand to many things. In order to survive you have to wear many hats and I have a closet full of them.

From PA to a British Lord to an Amy Winehouse Tribute it has all been quite an experience.

Portuguese Tutor

One of my other passions is the Portuguese language and over the last 20 years I have been teaching foreigners to speak Portuguese. I developed a Six Week Program that has excellent results. Based on learning Portuguese as a second language. This course can be done in person or online — there are actually two full courses online. You can check out the courses here: www.portugueseinsixweeks.com

Have other hobbies, but too many to list.

What do you like doing? Have you picked up any new hobbies since moving here?




Algarve Life - Amanda Gleaves

I have been living in the Algarve in Portugal since 1989! I have been teaching Portuguese to foreigners for nearly 20 years! https://portugueseinsixweeks.com/