I took a stroll around the plaza and the little streets of the village of Arraiolos in the Alentejo region of Portugal. The streets and alleyways were pristine and so well kept. The plaza was alive with children playing.
Naturally, I stopped in the carpet galleries and watched the women hand embroider their latest pieces of work. The patterns and vibrant colors were simply gorgeous. I appreciated the ladies' skills especially when I thought of Arraiolos' history and the centuries of carpet and tapestry making.
But I also perused the little shops with their handmade toys, with groceries, the pharmacy, the book store.The proprietors were friendly and helpful. You had no trouble picking out some linens for home or perhaps a toy for a grandchild.
I spent several hours meandering through this medieval little village. This is not a big European city or town. It is just a tiny laid back village. The only difference is that this is a famous one. Famous for its carpets that they lately even sell in New York City, U.S.A.