Saturday, we heard that Monica’s youngest son, Leandro, was accepted at the UERJ, the federal university in Rio de Janiero. Here in Brasil, federal universities are free, but it’s really hard to get into one. One has to pass a test (vestibular) that is different for each school. Leandro has taken a number of them for different schools – we’re so glad that he’s headed for college. Of course, Monica is now frantic, as only a Latina mom could be. Her baby is going to have to move to Rio, find a place to rent (they don’t have dorms) etc. Wednesday, we’re all going to Rio. I need to fly home, and Leandro needs to do some stuff at UERJ. Parabems, Leandro!!
The Tipo went back to the body shop today. It is having some adjustments made to the extensive body work that was done last month and some buffing to the new paint. Even if it was available, we wouldn’t take it to Rio because Monica is a little apprehensive about driving in Rio (I’m leaving, so she would have to drive back home). It’s not so much that the drivers are so bad here (but they are) it’s the combination of bad drivers and bad traffic that makes things so difficult in the city. You also have to cross a mountain to get there, and I’d rather she didn’t do that at night anyway.
There is a form of martial arts in Brazil called the Capoeira, similar in some ways to kick boxing and in other ways to ballet. It was started as a dance by slaves that wished to disguise the dangerous nature of this method of fighting from the masters. This art is fascinating to watch because the two (or more) participants whirl and kick very rapidly, with the object being to come as close as possible to the opponent without ever touching. This is also an excellent description of traffic in Rio.
The above paragraph was shamelessly lifted from rioholiday.com, which does not recommend driving in Rio for tourists. So, we’re on buses for the rest of the trip. We took one back from the body shop – it wasn’t quick, but it did the job. If necessary, we can take taxis in a pinch. They’re expensive, but not nearly as expensive as at home.
Wow, the weather here has not been summer-like for the last few days. It’s been raining on and off all day. It’s about 23C (that’s 73F). Not really warm, especially if you’re outside and you’re wet. Yesterday afternoon it was a bit warmer and the rain stopped for a few hours, so I cut the grass in front of the house. It’s a small yard and I used the string trimmer that I bought at WalMart in December. Looks good and it only took 30 minutes or so.
The dog that has adopted our house is still here, but we don’t see him too often in the rain. There is a house on our street that is to be torn down (it’s built on a hill that is collapsing) and I think that the dog is hanging out there in the rain. Last night, Billy and I went past there on our before-bed poop walk and he joined up with us – walking through the rain until Billy had finished his business. He followed us back to the house and looked at me with those big, sad eyes as I closed the gate, shutting him outside the iron gate and leaving him in the rain. I’ve given up on the person that adopted him coming back for him. Anyway, he’s had a bath, so we can thank the guy for that. His front paw is also getting much better. Last night, we got quite a bit ahead of him and he came running to catch up with us at full speed with his big, goofy tongue hanging out one side of his mouth. Wasn’t limping at all.
Dinner’s ready – it smells awesome. Gotta go.