My Blog

Stuff that you don’t see at home….

Countdown traffic light in Retiro

Many of the traffic lights in this area have been replaced recently.  They are now rectangular boxes, with a big digital count down of how long it is before the light changes to the right of the light.  A cool idea, as long as you ignore the obvious drag racing implications….  You know how long the light is going to remain green (no surprises) and you know how long the red light is going to last before you can go.  While the light is red, you get a scrolling message in a box below the count digits (partially obscured in this photo by a cable – sorry).  I tried to find something similar on the internet, but I couldn’t.  They’re really new, I suppose – maybe they’re even a Brasilian invention.  I have never seen anything like them before.

Nocturnal walking hazards

One thing that we have here that you won’t find at home are big snails.  They’re about 3-4″ long and come out at night – especially after a hard rain.  They’re part of nature’s clean-up crew – eating bits of rotting organic matter.  These were originally imported to Brasil from Africa around 1988 as a food source.  They thrive here – perhaps they’re not being eaten enough (there’s a parasite issue in wild ones, anyway).   They’re icky because they get can stepped on at night, shattering their shells and making an icky mess.  I’ve heard that crunching sound a few times – it’s just icky.  In the photo below, taken last night while walking Billy, three of the snails are making a meal of an unfortunate companion that likely fell victim to a shoe sole.  Another one looks like he’s trying to find the party.  Yeah, it’s icky, but in a not-something-you-see-at-home way.

The motorcycle should have been where the truck is now.

Today, I walked into town and took another look at the intersection where the motorcycle ran into the car.  Looks like the car was not doing anything wrong – he turned into a merge lane.  There’s no stop or even a merge sign at that intersection.  The moto should have been in the center lane, instead of hugging the curb (motos often pass cars on the right).  I turned right into a motorcycle in Vila Mury a few years ago that was doing the very same thing.

Looking over yesterday’s post, I thought that I should have included a photo of Retiro, so I took one this morning.  This is Av Sávio Cota Almeida Gama in Retiro, looking west.  Looks a little like the sixties, doesn’t it?

I fly back to the US tomorrow night.   Because…..      Oh, yeah.  I have to work for another month.







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