The Last Assembler


At Rua dos Almadas, in Loulé and which was formerly known as Rua do Arco do Chafariz, we find a small typical and familiar space where D. Maria Encarnação do Nascimento, known as D. Sanita, works as a gatherer.

As soon as he left school, he immediately went to learn the trade, because the harshness of life and the circumstances of the times required it. But Dona Sanita confesses to us, with her radiant sympathy: “My dream was to go to a daycare to take care of children, but life was not easy and I needed to win, times were very poor”. Now retired with a modest pension, she remains attached to the art of sewing and assembling, releasing an outburst: “I will die at work”.

Born and raised in Loulé, on Rua do Poço, she has worked in stores since she was a girl and girl, but for more than thirty years she has been installed in this corner, close to Rua das Lojas, where she combines work with a taste for socializing, as many regular customers they stop at door 10, not only to order some service, but also for two friendly chatting fingers.

In the past, there were many shoemakers and traditional shops and people used to go to the “village” to shop and find shoes or clothing. Even today, he has some fixed clients who ask him to make sheaths or fasten them, make small arrangements. There are clothes with a special meaning, with sentimental and affective value for those who have them. Footwear no longer fixes, only clothing, because the machine that is standing there does not work for lack of a piece.

About Loulé and the Louletans, he considers that times have changed habits and customs and that in the past there might have been more ties of affection. “It was another time. People helped each other more, they were more friendly with each other ”.

It is a pleasure to speak with D. Sanita for her affability, for her sweetness, she is a very dear and esteemed figure in the city. And that space so cozy, that attracts the attention of any visitor who passes by, is a space where affection.

And the taste for the craft are mixed with a visible devotion to Nossa Senhora da Piedade, the Sovereign Mother, patron of the louletanos, patented in the various images that decorate the walls of her friendly “workshop” and that stand out among the machines, the scissors, the lines and other utensils and pieces that also have their history.

At Rua dos Almadas … in Loulé, life has a very traditional feel.

This text published in Revista Raízes – Loulé identity and culture – is written by Luis Monteiro Pereira, journalist, poet, civil servant and who, however, unexpectedly left us.

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