Babes from Brazil save los muchachos 80 SWMs (27-70) seek serious BBs

Villamiel, a village of 800 inhabitants in Spain's poor and remote Extremadura province, is breathlessly awaiting the imminent arrival of an army of Brazilian women on the lookout for husbands. Villamiel's 80 bachelors, aged between 27 and 70, can hardly believe their luck.

It all started last year, when the single men of Villamiel looked around in despair: there were only two marriageable women, and both were spoken for. The bachelors decided to advertise throughout the region - "Single man seeks wife, with serious intentions" - but the response was hardly overwhelming.

A few weeks ago, however, a report of their plight, made by Portuguese television, was broadcast in Brazil on the programme O Fantastico. The village was swamped by intercontinental letters, faxes and telephone calls.

Jose Ramos, who is organising a grand reception early next month, says his phone has not stopped since. He received 250 letters last week, and the town hall fax machine has used up 12 rolls of paper - as much as it consumed in the previous 24 years.

Thousands of Brazilian women are apparently ready to cross the world to try their luck with the bachelors of Villamiel. A hefty contingent is expected from the city of Governador Valadares in Minas Gerais state, an emigrant society where women vastly outnumber men.

"We never imagined anything like this. We are overwhelmed," says Jose Ramos. "What's astounding is the high cultural level of the women writing to us. They're biologists, teachers, civil servants, single women and divorcees."

Spanish consulates in Brazil have been so bombarded with enquiries that one consular driver has been diverted to telephone duty. His answers are always the same: no, Brazilians don't need a visa for Spain; Villamiel is far from Madrid; a visitor must carry $100 (pounds 62) a day and a return air ticket; and in Villamiel there are handsome and ugly men like everywhere else.

Brazilian travel agents are promoting Villamiel tours. One young travel agent in the southern town of Botucatu bought a ticket herself, and encouraged three friends to join her.

The pace in Villamiel is leisurely, amid pines and oak trees. The village women are preparing their best shawls to decorate their balconies in welcome, and their finest hand-woven silk bedspreads. Others are already preparing the feast.

The men, meanwhile, are finishing the tobacco and asparagus harvest and face months of unemployment. "We can't offer much," says Jose Ramos. "We aren't very cultured, but we can give them our affection, friendship and love and we are very serious about that."

Jose's father, Vicente, would welcome a Brazilian daughter-in-law with open arms. "They're human beings like the rest of us."

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Installation and Service / Security Engineer

£22000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is part of a Group...

Recruitment Genius: Service Charge Accounts Assistant

£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you a a young, dynamic pers...

Cancer Research UK: Corporate Partnerships Volunteer Events Coordinator – London

Voluntary: Cancer Research UK: We’re looking for someone to support our award ...

Ashdown Group: Head of IT - Hertfordshire - £90,000

£70000 - £90000 per annum + bonus + car allowance + benefits: Ashdown Group: H...

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions