1. In my Portuguese mom’s kitchen there is potato knife waiting for me on the worktop when she is cooking, while my English mummy hangs an invisible “stay away from my kitchen” sign on the door.
But they both enjoy seeing their children eating the food they have cooked.
2. My Portuguese mom loves to wear her colourful trousers. My English mummy will never leave the house without a dark skirt.
But both of them would consider spending a day at a nudist beach.
3. My Portuguese mom dreams of the days when she could race me down the beach. My English mummy presses the sports channel button and watches others running.
But both of them believe someone should run.
4. My Portuguese mom will cook home-made chicken soup and arroz de cabidela for dinner. My English mummy will announce “if it’s” — if it is in the fridge we will eat it.
But no matter what, dinner will be on the table.
5. My Portuguese mom says, “quando lá chegares avisa” (let me know when you get there) when I tell her “see you later”. My English mummy will say, “please text me if you don’t come home.”
But neither of them will sleep comfortably if they do not hear from me.
6. While by the Atlantic my Portuguese mom offers me “um café” (a coffee), by the English Channel, my English mummy brews a cup of tea.
But both of them will offer a piece of toast to go with it.
7. After my third date, my Portuguese mom asks, “When are you getting married?” My English mummy simply says, “He is such a nice young man.”
But both of them have my love interests at heart.
8. While my Portuguese mom will give free advice to the soap opera actresses on TV, my English mummy will quietly stare at the hunky men playing tennis on the screen.
But neither of them will spend a day without turning the TV on.
9. My Portuguese mom believes in light dinners. My English mummy gets cheese-and-pickle sandwiches ready for lunch.
But neither of them will skip a meal.
10. While my Portuguese mom goes to the garden to look after her nine dogs and seven parrots, my English mummy makes sure all her five cats are in.
But neither of them can imagine life without their pets.
11. My Portuguese mom longs for a romantic story on the screen. My English mummy looks for the latest thriller.
But they both enjoy eating popcorn.
12. My Portuguese mom will be the first to let curiosity lead the way as soon as she hears “do not touch that button.” My English mummy will stick a yellow post-it to make sure no one will ever press it.
But none of them will be able to ignore that button.
13. While my Portuguese mom fills the house with real cactus and miniature palm trees, my English mummy avoids hay fever by making sure her plants are made of silk.
But they both love nature.
14. My Portuguese mom makes funny faces and asks “why are you still crying?” when I get robbed across the world. My English mummy heads into town and sends me a pack of Marks & Spencer’s colourful underwear to Ecuador.
But both of them will hope to see me smiling again soon.
15. My Portuguese mom knits a butterfly to decorate a pillow. My English mummy knits a coat.
But none of their children took up knitting.
16. My Portuguese mom will fall asleep as she tries to read her favourite books. My English mummy will be wide awake turning the next page of a new mystery book.
But they both laugh when they read what I write.