Just a thought....
Don't compare your life to others'. You have no idea what their journey is all about.

Monday, 30 January 2006

Call me!

Actually, don't call me. When the modem was hit, our phone line was also hit. When someone phones in, we get a 'blip' instead of a ringing phone. Bad news if you're more than halfway deaf or in another room. We called Telefonica who argued the toss for an hour or so that it was the phone unit. It took that time to convince them that we had, in fact, already replaced the phone unit, thinking that it was the unit that was faulty. Well... we're still waiting for the repair guy that was arriving 'within the hour'. Guess its the same all over, huh?

Aldo is here. Jorge will be typing his CV out for him. He has back trouble and the orthoped says he needs surgery. What is his problem? Sciatica! I've been trying to convince him to go to a chiro, but he's apparently tried accupuncture and feels that is his limit in 'alternative medicine'. I can do no more.

Sunday, 29 January 2006

Great weather for ducks!

Its raining.. its pouring... the old man is being a pain... Oops! Sorry Jorge..... he did make coffee, so I can't complain :)

Yes, it is raining (you noticed?), so we're not traipsing anywhere today. Might even get some work done lol

My dear friend, Suzanne sent me a Hallmark card. She's such a honey..... always there for everyone. The card was just a 'I'm thinking of you' - its the kind of thing she does. I loved the words though: "Life is an adventure... seize the moment". So true! Thanks Suzanne!!! Luv you too!

Green green grass... wish I could save smells!

The day started badly... we woke up late and had no idea where to go to. For me that is bad. I like to have the whole route planned, cooler box packed, all the little travel extras stashed... but not this time. 10:30am we rolled out of here with a vague idea of going north-westish - being the only area that didn't have rain forecast. Time is running short. Anne will be back on Tuesday, so this is our last weekend with the car and the chance to see the world at our leisure.

We headed out through Jundiaí, which isn't far out of São Paulo. That's where Emilia has her restaurant. From there, we took the road to Itatiba, then Morungaba, Amparo (wow! It has changed soooo much!) and finally on to Serra Negra. It was our intention to go as far as Aguas de Lindoya, but we only made it to Lindoya. I was feeling so lousy by then that we turned back and stopped in Serra Negra. I haven't been car sick in many years. May have had something to do with a lack of food and chance to visit the jaz.

We browsed through the little shops at Serra Negra. Its a charming town where they grow bougainvillea over the streets. The shops are delightful, though there is an overabundance of knitwear. Any outifit you like, you can find knitted finely in Serra Negra. The same goes for leatherwork. Gorgeous jackets, belts of every kind, bags... you name it. We had trouble finding a place to eat, as it was way after lunch.... almost 4pm. We eventually had 'pastel' at one of the eating places. It was nice enough. Mine was filled with mielie (milho or corn) and requeijão (a type of creamy cream cheese). We bought a few t-shirts. Tat and I bought really large ones to use as sleep shirts. Jorge bought shirts related to beer drinking - wonder why??? haha!

The trip home was uneventful. Jorge has rushed over to the pub to show off his find. We now have to clean up and maybe I'll play a while till I'm tired enough to fall off the chair. I did a photo repair tonight. I'm not happy with the result. Perhaps I'll fiddle with it again tomorrow when I'm fresher. I must still upload today's film and photos. I'm sure there are a few nice shots for my site

Thursday, 26 January 2006


Our road is full of them! Ok... just cops, but the cops here are the 'ride-em cowboy' type, hanging out the car window pow-powing down the road. For now, these are peacefully standing around.

Tat, packed with the charm and grace (did I just say 'grace'?), strolled over, smiled her dazzling smile at the cop and found out what all the intrigue was about.... A flat tyre! The cop smiled sweetly back and said, "There's no problem... yet". Oh? Well, apparently, the van with the flat tyre is only full of convicts. Haha! So, just for today, we have the most dangerous and safest street in the city.

Can someone tell me why no one has changed that tyre yet? Makes you wonder....

Its summer, ok?!

Just in case no one noticed, its summer here. I don't even want to think in terms of what the temp is. I just know it feels as tho someone left the heater on for too long. The fan is doing pretty well circulating the hot air. Its one of those incredibly hot, listless days.

We had to go into town yesterday to get a new modem. It was rather amusing for a while seeing everyone scurrying around looking for something to do. Incredible how we now take the presence of the internet so for granted.

It rained again, very briefly, this afternoon. It hasn't cooled the place down. We braai'ed (bbq'd) some pork chops this evening with roasted garlic, roasted onion, baked potato and salad... I'm full, but craving a desert.

Hey.... ain't I just soooo good!? I actually posted in here two days running... I'm impressed with myself *grins*

Wednesday, 25 January 2006

New beginnings

Ok, I know I tend to waffle. Did I mention our new house? We did finally move. We're now living in the Lithuanian community. I call it 'the village'. In fact, we all call it 'the village'. In the 'praça' or square (its actually round) at the center, the old men play draughts or dominoes. They can be found there any day, except when the weather is foul.

We have everything available to us. Shopping in town, I think, is more out of habit than anything else. I think I'm becoming a recluse. I no longer teach. It simply takes too long to get in to students. To spend 2 - 3 hours travelling there for a 1 1/2 hour class, then to head back... its just not worth it. I need to get Seal Services rolling properly to pay our way.

The house itself is bright and sunny and clean. Its not enormous, but big enough for us. Its so light. Believe it or not, the plants are thriving. That's another story.... the plants...

We went back to the old house one week after we'd moved out to collect some mail. Not a word of a lie... every plant in the garden was stone dead. Now you have to understand, I never put any effort in at all... just let it grow. It was known as 'the jungle'. The theory goes that once we had left, whatever was sapping all the joy from the people turned on the plants.

Anyhow... I digress...

My herbs are thriving. I need to harvest tomorrow. I think a trip to the nursery is in order. It won't be tomorrow, as its São Paulo's birthday

I'm no liar!

I said I was no good at diaries, blogs, journals, etc, etc and its soooo true! Here I am... months and months away from the last blog with too much to say and thus.... not nearly enough.

Yesterday, Monday, Jan 24th, storm broke over us and blew the modem. Now we know how this family reacts to internet downtime hahaha!

On Sunday, T had her boyfriend here. They washed the 3 dogs, Dingo, Romany and Rover. Dingo is calmer now and actually stops moving for a few seconds at a time. We do need to find her a home though.

Friday... J is trying to find his roots. Now, can someone tell me what good it does us to know that his forebears were coffee barons who could afford to donate the land for the establishing of a town??? Ok, so its done his ego the world of good, so I guess I shouldn't complain.

Whoever heard of a town called 'Holy spirit of the pines' - Espirito Santo do Pinhal. Then there's Santo Antonio do Jardim. Apparently the old duck donated her garden area and dedicated it to Saint Anthony.

:::Catching up on the 2005 - 2006 news:::

Maluco disappeared in November. I still miss him. My fear is that he was caught in the kite strings or trapped or poisoned. Why do I even think of these things?? Life goes on...

We got all three of our police clearance certificates from Brazil and finally got the one from SA. Whew! What a performance!!! Its all 'go' now.

I got a handycam for Xmas. Not sure I want one. My little Canon powershot suits me so nicely and I do so love showing photos. Perhaps once I've learnt the ins and outs of the video software, I'll like it better.

A and I and the kids went to Hopi Hari. My camera wouldn't work for some reason. We call came home looking like broiled lobsters. A was terrified in the catacombes. She clung to me like crazy. I only found out afterwards that she is virtually blind in the dark hahaha!!! I'm getting braver and braver.... I even went on the foefie slide (ok... I'm NOT translating that lol)

Will someone please remind me to post again before another year goes by?