A Travellerspoint blog

March 2016

Explosion

My wonderful students drove me to Ponta Grossa again after our 6 p.m. class. They even drove out of their way to take me to the bus station, so I could buy a ticket leaving at 8:10 p.m.

I got my ticket, but I needed to charge my iPod. I went to a sketchy looking outlet that didn't have a cover, and as soon as I plugged in my adapter, it sent a huge blue electric shock into the device. At first I laughed and thought it was funny, but when I looked at the metal prongs, that shock was so big that it actually took a chunk right out of the metal and blackened the white plastic.

I went to complain to the manager people, but they told me that it must be my fault. I had a strange plug they don't usually see there, so I must've triggered the jolt. Uhhh, no you are wrong, I have used this plug in every other outlet in your crappy bus station, sometimes for many hours, while I wait for your hopelessly off-schedule buses. It was only the first time that I took a chance with this particular outlet, that didn't have a cover on it. Maybe you should put the cover on it, so no one else potentially shocks themselves into oblivion. They didn't understand a word I said, so of course, it's my fault and the plug will stay as it is until someone dies.

The bus was only 20 minutes late, a success by Brazilian standards. We drove off into the night and I found a hotel close to the station quickly after I arrived. The owner gave me a cheap rate after I showed him how empty and pathetic my wallet was.

I spent the rest of the night complaining to Jeremy on Skype. I can't even justify how late I stayed up, while I was sick, blowing my nose into a toilet paper roll I stole from the shared bathroom. I felt like absolute crap in the morning.

Big chunk out of my plug

Big chunk out of my plug


The offending outlet

The offending outlet


Hotel Baruck

Hotel Baruck

Posted by baixing 17:00 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

The long sad ride home

I woke up too early for the ferry, but the workers let me come with them, so I enjoyed an empty repositioning cruise for about 20 minutes.

Somehow, I made it to the bus station, but I was two hours early for the next trip to Curitiba. I tried to find a bank, but they only sent me to a sketchy looking ATM, no thanks, I'll take my chances with my card at the rodoviaria in Curitiba.

On the walk back to the bus station, I saw a nice cozy park where I could dry out my soaked towel and shorts from yesterday's disaster.

Trying to wake up and be happy

Trying to wake up and be happy


My repositioning cruise

My repositioning cruise


Goodbye Ilha do Mel

Goodbye Ilha do Mel

Posted by baixing 17:00 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

The terrible terrible day

All night, there was some crazy party, including my immediate neighbours, who were having sex so violently, the fan on my wall threatened to fall right off its shelf. They brought the bongos and guitars and starting singing "blahblah Ilha do Meeelllll" over and over again, it never ended.

I turned the iPod up and attempted to sleep. I got snatches of it until 5:30 a.m. The plan was to get up real early at low tide, and walk 8 ish kilometres out to Fortaleza, the old Portuguese fort. It's a lot more difficult than it sounds.

At first, I climbed entirely the wrong mountain. I was faced with a dangerous cliff, which had some menacing rocks at the bottom. There was no way, I was going to find my way down the other side of it. So, I went back to try and find the right way I found a white flag in front of a clearly marked path over another part of the same mountain. I dunno what my problem was, and why I didn't see it at all the first time I climbed the mountain.

This led me to another beach with another white flag on it. I followed the path behind the flag again, but it only led me to a weird hippy camp, full of garbage and poorly constructed shelters. The trail narrowed and went into the dark jungle. I was a little afraid of the crazy hobo that might live there, so I didn't go any further.

I walked to the end of the second beach and almost gave up, because I didn't see anymore flags anywhere and the rocks looked extremely dangerous to climb. I decided to either figure out what to do by 8 a.m. or go back and just take the ferry instead.

On my sad, defeated walk back to the ferry docks, a couple of fishermen told me that I could climb the rocks at low tide, no problem. It was just getting to be low tide right now, so I went right back. I scrambled over the like a crazy person, scratching up my knees, feet and hands on the barnacles until they bled.

When I finally got to the next beach, past the rocks, I found a small guest house which was connected to the road to Novo Brasilia Finally, I found my way to the other side of the island. From here on out, the walk was quite easy, but the blazing sun beat down intensely once I got to the next beach, the beach leading to Fortaleza.

My first stop was this port, which was built to keep the Spanish away back in the 1700s. It looked like it was close by, but it actually took an hour to walk there. A nice peaceful walk of course, but also hot, sweaty, thirsty and hungry. I ate my two oranges when I got there and regained some energy to climb up to the lighthouse.

So, I did another hour walk down the beach and climbed up the easy stairs to the top. I could see from there how far I had travelled, and all before lunch! I had two more oranges and booted it back down to the Novo Brasilia ferry dock. I had just made the 1 p.m. sailing back to Encantadas. I made a complete circle of the southern tip of the island. The north, is inaccessible by law, so I considered Ilha do Mel finished.

After lunch, I grabbed some cold beers and went down to the beach again to sleep off the rest of the day. I looked through my photos and put my camera down on my towel. A fatal mistake. As I was snoozing, the tide came in and swept my camera out to sea. I ran after it and retrieved but I thought it was a goner. I had been waiting for it to die since I washed it last year as I was cleaning pickle juice out of my bag in Singapore. There is no explanation as to why I had pickles in the same bag as my camera, and also how I forgot that camera in the bag as I cleaned it out. Let's just move on.

With very little faith in drying out the camera, I moved my towel back a lot of metres and took the battery and SD card out to dry. It's almost too painful to say, but I fell asleep again. The tide caught up with me and swept all my belongings out to sea AGAIN. But this time, it was so much worse. I ran around picking everything up, my journal, my water bottle, my camera battery, my camera, my shorts and my towel, but as hard as I tried, I couldn't find that SD card. All my pictures from this weekend's beautiful adventures were gone into the ocean. It was as if the island itself was camera shy and took its photos back from me. Maybe I had taken a secret photo of something! It all seemed so cosmic at the time, but really I know it was only my own dumb fault.

As I walked home, dejected and angry at myself, yet again, I saw a sign for a blues festival and heard one of the bands playing English music. It was 20 reals to get in and they took my master card. Oh my yes. I took a quick shower and came back ready for the show, feeling a little better already.

The whole thing was quite laid back, only a few people danced while most everyone watched with beers in hand. Again, the English music was a relief and I had a nice night, dancing by myself, despite everything that went wrong and all the open sores and blisters on my feet. I got tired at about 10, so I went back to my shack, where it was surprisingly quiet.

Encantadas Grotto

Encantadas Grotto


The lighthouse

The lighthouse


Grotto

Grotto


Cannons at Fortaleza

Cannons at Fortaleza


Ilha do Mel

Ilha do Mel


Ilha do Mel

Ilha do Mel


Ilha do Mel

Ilha do Mel


Ilha do Mel

Ilha do Mel

Posted by baixing 17:00 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

It rained all day

I had a leisurely breakfast in the morning, two cheese sandwiches, fruit and a lot of cafe com elite.

The hotel owner even drove me to the ferry when I told him I would walk there. I beat the giant Paranagua ferry (the one I was originally going to take) by at least two hours, I think. That meant I could find my hotel before they did, on this busy Easter weekend.

The woman at the info booth didn't help much, but a random dude walked around with me and brought me to an old lady who had some shacks in the backyard. Perfect, because I forgot to bring enough money. I had 76 reals left for two more days on the island ($20). I'd have to lay low for the rest of the time. That was OK, because it was raining and clammy out anyway. I bought some ramen for dinner and granola with yogurt and fruit for breakfast, so I was pretty much set with 50 reals left for tomorrow, phew.

Camping Tia Lenita

Camping Tia Lenita


Camping Tia Lenita

Camping Tia Lenita


Encantadas

Encantadas


Encantadas

Encantadas

Posted by baixing 17:00 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

Crazy bus problems

I was lucky enough to catch the 6:30 bus to Curitiba after work. I went down to the highway right after my last class and figured that if no bus came, I'd just walk to the rodoviaria, where I know there was a bus leaving at 6:30 for sure.

Anyway, a ton of people had the same idea, so I just waited with them and followed them to Ponta Grossa. I had about 30 seconds to buy my ticket and a big white sign said CURITIBA 6:30, so I asked for that one and ran to the bus. As the driver was leaving the station, he said "something something Paranagua", so I ran to try and tell him I bought the wrong ticket.

A random guy who spoke English told me that I just had to stay on the bus and I could pay later. OK, cool. I wrote to Francine in Curitiba to cancel, and then to Ingrid in Paranagua to let her know my arrival time. Ingrid said she'd pick me up and everything was fine for an hour.

When we got to Curitiba though, a huge line was waiting to get on our bus, and they kicked me off, telling me to buy a ticket on the next bus, leaving at 11:15. Oh good god. I'd arrive in Paranagua at 1:15 a.m. Ingrid said that would be fine, but I still felt guilty, and also wanted to get a little extra sleep tonight, so I took an earlier bus to Pontal do Sul, which was actually closer to Ilha do Mel and had more frequent ferries to take in the morning.

It was pouring when we arrived, and I was the last one on the bus. The bus station manager wouldn't even tell me which direction to walk in to get a hotel, so I just took off on my own toward some lights. I found a bar/convenience store where the owner drew me a terrible map and I didn't get anywhere near any hotel.

Undeterred, I kept walking toward the ferry, pretty sure I would find something. All i Found was an angry dog and gave up looking. I saw a man and woman in their yard and asked them where I could stay. After a few minutes of not understanding each other, they offered me their couch, but I felt bad again, so I went back to searching on my own. Finally, I saw a taxi and flagged it down. The driver took me to a hotel, almost exactly where I had gotten off the bus! I was so angry at that bus station man. I paid the driver and took a room. It was clean and sparkling white. Good enough.

Pousada Caminho das Ilhas

Pousada Caminho das Ilhas


Pousada Caminho das Ilhas

Pousada Caminho das Ilhas


Pousada Caminho das Ilhas

Pousada Caminho das Ilhas


Pousada Caminho das Ilhas

Pousada Caminho das Ilhas

Posted by baixing 17:00 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

Bee-You-Tee-Ful Antonina

I arrived at Franciele's house at about 1:30 a.m. There was a complicated security process involving cameras and a man yelling at me in Portuguese through a PA system. He eventually opened the two metal doors via some sort of robot, and I went inside. Franciele lived on the 14th floor and she wasn't home, she left the door open for me while she went to a concert. Such a nice lady! Even though she wasn't home, her small dog was. And he begged me to jump in bed with me, so I let him, and I snuggled with him all night.<br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">My alarm went off at 6 a.m. and I left Franciele, still sleeping in her bed. The bus was supposed to leave at 7 am, but it was full so I had to leave at 10. I was too chicken to go back to the super secure apartment complex, so I got some breakfast for 8 reals (some sort of mashed up beef deep fried) with a cafe com leite. I killed time looking up fancy restaurants in Antonina and downloading the maps.<br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">The bus finally left and I slept the whole way there. I was pretty sure a real gaucho was sitting beside me, cowboy hat and all.<br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">I arrived in Antonina at around noon in stifling heat. I was thirsty and hungry, but the restaurants probably weren't open yet so I went up to the old church and walked back to town along the waterfront.<br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">It's such a quiet peaceful place, even the drunks sitting under the shade singing at the top of their lungs add to the charm. <br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">I found the restaurant Cantina Casa Verde very easily, and immediately ordered the barreado. It was a little expensive and when he brought out some tasteless mush and beef stew to eat with three bananas and rice, I was quite disappointed. I wasn't disappointed with the amazing locally brewed beer, but I was shocked at what they were selling for 80 reals. When I got the bill I was surprised they had knocked 20 reals off the price. So, maybe the original price was for two people, I'm not sure. My first taste of barreado was not very impressive.<br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">I went back to the port with another German beer from the supermarket and just hung out there until it was time to go. I tried to get the bus back at 4:15, but it was sold out so I had to wait for 7:50. Not such a problem because the waterfront was so relaxing, but I missed going out with Franciele and her friends.<br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">I got back to her house at almost 11 and Pagu, the dog, was not there. The window was open but there was no dog, I had a twinge of concern... I took a shower, then Franciele showed up with her dog in tow and I was relieved he didn't jump out the window after all. We talked for a while and then went to bed.<br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">In the morning Adriel from last week invited us to his place for breakfast so we brought the dog and he made us tapioca pancakes with cheese. We sang some songs and then went for a picnic with Francieles friends in tangua park.

Breakfast, deep fried something

Breakfast, deep fried something


Box do Eliseu

Box do Eliseu


Antonina

Antonina


Antonina

Antonina


Antonina

Antonina


Antonina

Antonina


Antonina

Antonina


Antonina

Antonina


Antonina

Antonina


Me vs. Antonina

Me vs. Antonina


Antonina port

Antonina port


Cantina Casa Verde

Cantina Casa Verde


Porto de Cima beer at Cantina Casa Verde

Porto de Cima beer at Cantina Casa Verde


Barreado

Barreado


Cantina Casa Verde

Cantina Casa Verde


Old theatre

Old theatre


Antonina

Antonina


Antonina

Antonina


Antonina

Antonina


Antonina streets

Antonina streets


Graffiti

Graffiti


Antonina

Antonina


Antonina

Antonina


Pagu

Pagu

Posted by baixing 17:00 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

It&#39;s really hard to go a small distance

I headed out this morning on the 7am bus to ponta grossa, thinking this should be early enough to make it to Vila velha. Not exactly. <br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">I had a little card that the woman at the bus station gave to me with bus directions and I found out it was wrong. There were no times on it, and when I took the buses they told me to take, I ended up at a random place on the side of the highway, 3 km away from where I wanted to go. I was forced to walk all the way there. It was pretty dangerous with giant trucks lumbering by constantly. <br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">After an hour singing random songs from my iPod and sauntering down the freeway like a hobo, I found myself at the gate of the park. <br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">A man stopped me and after taking what seemed like an excessive amount of time typing on his phone, he couldn't tell me what he had originally wanted to, he just pointed down the street. I kept walking, and the military police stopped me...AGAIN. For some reason he had to bring me to the front ticket office himself, I was about 20 metres away at that point. Where were you 5 kms ago? Whatevz.<br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">I was getting really tired of this attitude of having massive security for something as simple as a state park or art gallery.<br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">At the reception area, they brought the one guy that spoke English out and he told me how to buy a ticket and take the bus to the attractions. He was nice enough, but oh great a bus tour...for maximum security purposes we were all shuttled around between the craters and rock formations. They would let us off at various places and then we went around in a little clump, easily observed and controlled. People must really be jerks in Brazil if you have to keep such close watch on tourists at a nature park. People with very young children and retirees who can barely make it up the stairs. <br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">Other than the transportation and security annoyances, this park was worth the visit, the crater is pretty amazing and the rocks are awesome. <br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">You can look straight down into the earth and look up at towering monstrosities made from glaciers.<br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">Admission was really really cheap, so that was great, and my lunch wasn't much of a ripoff either. It was just the sheer amount of people watching you making sure you didn't go off the path or start turning the rocks into your own art canvas that was disconcerting.<br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">After I walked around, I tried to take the bus back. My guidebook said it would be easy to flag one down but it was not. None of the buses would stop no matter how hard I waved. A poor family said the next bus came in three hours and they were waiting for it. That was insane, so I just went back to the info guy and asked him what he knew about the bus, he said the same thing, the bus comes at 6 p.m., sorry.

I turned right around and started walking back down the highway. He ran after me with a walkie talkie and the English speaking guy on the other end. He told me not to walk and that he would bring me to the bus because it was too dangerous. Why don't the city planners make the bus go all the way to the park then, if it's so dangerous. It's the main tourist attraction in town! What are people supposed to do? Ugh.<br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">So it was super nice of him to bring me back the 3 km I had walked in the morning. Then, there was about an hour until my bus to Ponta Grossa came, so I tried the beer with the sexy lady on it that I'd been seeing around town. It's delicious btw.<br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;"><br style="font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">I made it back just in time for the 5:10 bus back home, a successful though frustrating and tiring day trip.

There was a major traffic jam on the way home, so I got home pretty late.

The wrong bus to the park

The wrong bus to the park


I was happy until they dropped me off

I was happy until they dropped me off


Crater

Crater


Me and crater

Me and crater


Crater

Crater


Crater

Crater


Me and crater

Me and crater


Crater

Crater


&#38;quot;Golden lake&#38;quot;

&#38;quot;Golden lake&#38;quot;


A fish in the clear lake

A fish in the clear lake


Old people on the trail

Old people on the trail


On the trail

On the trail


Lunch

Lunch


Some sort of pastry

Some sort of pastry


OMG sugar overload

OMG sugar overload


Vila Velha

Vila Velha


Vila Velha

Vila Velha


Vila Velha

Vila Velha


Vila Velha

Vila Velha


Vila Velha

Vila Velha


Vila Velha

Vila Velha


Vila Velha

Vila Velha


Vila Velha

Vila Velha


Vila Velha

Vila Velha


Vila Velha

Vila Velha


Vila Velha

Vila Velha


Vila Velha

Vila Velha


Vila Velha

Vila Velha


Sexy lady beer

Sexy lady beer


OMG TRAFFIC

OMG TRAFFIC

Posted by baixing 17:00 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

Marketing and got a new backpack

I woke up without a headache for the first time in three days. I took that as a sign that I need more sleep in general.

Adriel was already awake, but he didn't sleep at home. He was super tired because of sleeping on someone else's couch.

We went out to get a hangover breakfast for him. I got a pastel with cheese and guava and he got some with loads of beef inside. It was obviously quite confusing for the young man taking my order as I yelled CAFE COM LEITE and GOIABA into his face.

We wandered around the market for the rest of the morning. I looked for a new backpack and found one made of recycled truck tarp, so it's a lot more waterproof than my old one.

Adriel bought his daughter's name written in Japanese on a bright orange cardboard and I looked in vain for some new perfume, since I broke a bottle on the floor in his bathroom the day before.

We became quite exhausted, after looking at so many shops, they all start to look the same. The sun was beating down on us and we were ready for lunch and a nap.

We hopped over to the store and bought some wine, pineapple and steak. Adriel whipped up something awesome with olives and we relaxed with our wine over chocolate.

Adriel was desperately in need of a nap, so I went home and left him in peace.

New backpack

New backpack

Posted by baixing 17:00 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

The Brazil I love

In the morning, we had breakfast of pitas and cheese with milk, also the pao de queijo I brought last night.

At 8 a.m. I had to leave and catch my bus to Lapa, a place that reminded me of Honduras. This was the Brazil I came to see, with cobblestone streets and Portuguese colonial architecture. Most of it is gone, but the parts that are restored are quaint and in pristine condition.

There's an old theatre and a couple museums about the siege of Lapa. A battle when some anti-nationalist rebels were stopped from traveling to Rio to try and break up the newly from ed country (I think). Things get lost in translation sometimes.

I picked up some chocolates from a farmers' market for Adriel and hoped they wouldn't melt. After stopping at a few museums, I had some coxinha de forofa at a famous bakery, Panificadora Zeni which I drank with a Skol "EXTREME" behind the old city hall. Actually it was a really awesome beer. It is now my Brazilian favourite.

I wanted to try some cattle driver food, so I looked at a place that was #2 on TripAdvisor. They didn't have the dish I wanted, so I went to the one in the guidebook. It seemed to be set up for tour buses *blech*, but I went anyway. It was good, but wayyyyy too salty. I guess those cattle drivers had to store their food somehow.

After maybe three cups of coffee and eating all the fried bananas, I went to the last museum, Casa Lacerda, the house of the man that defended the city during the revolution. It was really beautifully restored, for real the best "famous person home" I've ever seen.

In most of the museums in Lapa you must wear booties to protect the floor I guess. I remember this in Indonesia. What little money they have for museums, I suppose, they want to protect it.

There were maybe two hours until the next bus back, so I bought another beer and caught the wifi signal in the park beside the restaurant as I waited. At one point I was serenaded or sexually harassed by some drunk hobos walking by, twice.

I must say though, as a tourist, this little town really has its act together. The tourism office is close to the bus station, it has nice maps and it's easy to find beside the city's main church. There are no maps online, believe me, so this was perfect for me. The town is so small, that anyone I asked knew where all the most popular stores and restaurants were. Even the homeless people were friendly.

The museums were obviously make-work projects for some of the overachieving teenagers in town, but it was super cute and way nicer having them guard me, rather than the para-military jerks at the museums in Curitiba. This really was the Brazil I had hoped to experience. There was homey tasting traditionally prepared food and a much slower pace of life, leafy parks scattered around with kitchen table entrepreneurs selling produce and homemade wares in the shade. It's a stereotype, I guess, but it's one that I think should be cherished and preserved, something the people in Lapa have done well. Their unassuming colonial style blends seamlessly with modern day designs and they have made it a perfect tourism getaway instead of the more common stifling traps I have found in the city.

I took the bus back at 4 p.m. but hadn't heard from Adriel all day. I left half of my stuff at his place, so I was a little concerned. I got on the bus anyway, hoping he'd get home by 6 p.m., when I'd arrive. I sent him another message when he wasn't at his house, saying I was waiting for him. Sigh.

After waiting an hour, he finally called the security guard, who had been calling him for me. Adriel reminded me that he had left the door open, as he mentioned at breakfast. Oh my god, I totally forgot. I went upstairs and let myself in without a problem. He even left me some garlic bread and banana cake for dinner. Adriel stayed out with his friends all night, so I had the whole place to myself. Nice. I slept for 10 hours that night.

Igreja Matriz de Santo Antonio

Igreja Matriz de Santo Antonio


Igreja Matriz de Santo Antonio

Igreja Matriz de Santo Antonio


Lapa

Lapa


Lapa theatre

Lapa theatre


Lapa historical museum

Lapa historical museum


Lapa arms museum

Lapa arms museum


Lapa prison

Lapa prison


Me vs. coxinhas

Me vs. coxinhas


Lipski restaurante

Lipski restaurante


Me vs. banana

Me vs. banana


War hero

War hero


War heroes

War heroes


Casa Lacerda

Casa Lacerda


museum booties

museum booties


Casa Lacerda

Casa Lacerda


Park

Park

Posted by baixing 17:00 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

Graciosa is the best bus company so far

All of my students cancelled their classes today, so I went to Curitiba a little early. I had to wait all day for one student, and then she cancelled it an hour before her class. What a waste of a day. I'll get paid 24 reals for that, it's $8 in Canada.

I found out how to use the bus to Ponta Grossa today. One goes to the bus station (rodoviaria) and the other goes to the city bus terminal. Last week, I mistakenly took the terminal bus, and got a nice tour of all the barrios in Ponta Grossa. This week, I specifically asked for the rodoviaria bus and waiting an extra 20 minutes for it. It was much faster than last week, though. The sun was actually still up when I left Ponta Grossa. Imagine that.

I went to the usual Princesa dos Campos ticket booth, but they told me to go with another company called Graciosa. It only had two buses to Curitiba per day, but he was right. All the Princesa buses were very late and backed up, there were giant lines like I've never seen before. I don't know what the problem was, but our bus came right on time and we arrived on time as well.

I sent Adriel a message that I had arrived and he had dinner waiting for me, rice with pork and juice. His daughter Yasmin was there, but she soon left for her mom's house on the other side of town.

After we dropped her off, in a really sketchy place, Adriel told me about how he had grown up there and had pulled himself up with an MBA. He now works as a manager at a life insurance company, making a salary he never dreamed of, far away from the slums.

He played guitar, a skill he honed while attending church with his devout parents as a child. He shared some beers with me and we shared some music. I soon felt sleepy and went to bed.

Graciosa I lovvvve youuuu

Graciosa I lovvvve youuuu

Posted by baixing 17:00 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)