The Great Blackout

Algarve Life - Amanda Gleaves
2 min readMay 15, 2023

I am just not cut out for this diary writing lark!

I have tried to write every day, but I run the risk of being boring. So instead of a day in the life post — I am going for a more — last five days approach!

This year I have had a few friends come over and managed to get to see them. Trying to tie all that in with work and other activities can be hard but it is worth it!

One friend I hadn’t seen for 22 years! She came on holiday here in 2000. The year of the great blackout!

Hmmm, maybe you don’t know about that.

Well, on May 9th, in the year 2000, shortly after 10pm almost half the country lost power.

Imagine being in a foreign country on holiday and all the lights going out at villa. You look out of your window, only to find that there are no lights on — anywhere.

This is what happened to Lorraine. She was alone in a villa at the time, her friend had gone back to the UK to deal with business.

She quickly called the villa company — run by another friend of mine and they sent help. A couple of friends went and spent the night with her, so she wasn’t alone.

I used to clean the villa. That was when I met her, we really hit it off and spent a lot of time together during her stay. When she went back we vowed to keep in touch.

And we did.

That was one of the biggest blackouts Portugal ever had. The whole of Lisbon was left in the dark and they even put more police on the streets as they were concerned things could get out of hand. But they didn’t. No more crimes than usual were registered.

Don’t you just love Portugal!

The culprit?

A Stork.

Yes, they said a stork had done it. After two hours everything was back to normal. There was a little confusion as to why the emergency electricity had not kicked in.

If you want to read more news you can click here: More, and here: News

That reminds me of another incident must talk about. The firework Factory….

See you soon, or maybe in another five days!




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!