As a small child being raised on the Island of St. Michael, Azores, working was the game we played. Learning how to shuck corn, learning how to pluck and clean chickens, learning how to plant a garden, wash clothes by hand, gather wood for the stove, feed the animals in the barn, wash floors on your hands and knees, learn the magic of a needle and thread and most importantly prepare daily meals. You were taught self respect and respect for others. You made the best of what you had but more importantly you were taught that money was not the most important thing in ones life. How you felt about yourself and your accomplishments at the end of the day was what being proud was all about.
There were no toys, computers or girl sports. Everything you did was creative and you strengthened your courage to strive for the best you could be by exercising your mind and body. Jack of all trades and master of none, but when it was all over you were WOWED by your accomplishment of excellence. You were taught to never give up and fight for what you believed in.
To be able to prepare meals that brought great pleasure to those you most loved was a gift, not a game. It was a passion not a chore. How could I understand why I was chosen to walk this road?
After more than 50 years of rehearsing my culinary addiction, I crawled with inner strength into the business world of restaurateur having today established two magnificent restaurants.
The Cockatoo at Webb Cove in Stonington, Maine, specializing in fresh quality seafood and The Cockatoo II Portuguese Restaurant located at Goose Cove in Deer Isle, Maine, specializing in both fresh quality seafood and prime beef. At both locations, my main ingredient is love.
I have never in my lifetime put in so many hours of intense daily labor with no time to rest and yet I feel I have never worked a day in my life. Itís a gift from God and a calling to serve the public with this magical gifted talent that Iíve been blessed with.
Thank you for coming to The Cockatoo and The Cockatoo Portuguese Restaurant, but most of all for believing in me.
I wish you good health always.
Your forever friend...