For Irene Cubo, animals are far more important than sleep.
António Gonçalves, G Poudada
Texto de Tiago Pais
Fotografias de Tiago Pais
"Sometimes I can’t sleep well if I think the sheep are thirsty. I wake up in the middle of the night worried. My husband says to me, 'Never mind, they do not die for one night.' But I do not know if they do not die.” For Irene Cubo, animals are far more important than sleep. It has been like this practically her whole of life: she and her husband Manuel João have been animal breeders since adolescence and the only ones in the small village of Palácios, 15 kilometers from Bragança, which are not yet retired. Nowadays they have 400 heads of the same breed: the typical white Galician churra bragançana, the famous lamb bragançano DOP, whose tender and juicy meat is so much appreciated in the surroundings. It was not always like that, though. Before, the couple also raised cattle. But it came a time when it was necessary to choose between cows and sheep. "Having both at the same time was too much work. The day we sold the cows and saw them go in the truck, I was weeping. But after a month, I just thought, 'Blessed the hour’