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

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Wednesday picture overload

The title should warn you ; )

Once it was light, a bus-ride away, I found myself staring at a dull grey sky, a penetrating drizzle just missing the overhang where we were waiting for the metro to pull up.

The metro was crowded, as it always is at that hour of the morning. I was pressed up against the door, my favourite spot - aside from the actual seats, the door is the best place for purposes of being able to breathe. This photo was taken with my camera hoisted over everyone's heads. It is the reflection in the glass of the door.

I got off the metro at a stop I don't usually use. Now tell me, if you were a foreigner and only knew that 'saida' means 'exit', would you be able to find the exit using this sign? It amused me.

I took the bus to the British Cultural institute, a place that is rather familiar to Tat and I. It is the only English library in the city (pity it's so far) and the location of our favourite pub *grins* I wasn't there for social purposes though, but to do a test.

There were a bunch of us. I didn't count, but I would guess around 10. My little chair/desk thing squeaked every time I wrote something and sounded exactly like Specs' squeak. The test was meant to take 2 hours. It took me one hour. It was, for me, easy and for once, it involved some interesting vocabulary. For the written part, I had to develop a lesson plan, then write an essay justifying my choices. When I left, there were three types of expressions on the faces of those remaining: those who were still at the start and struggling, those who thought I had nothing to write and therefore surely failed and those who guessed I was a foreigner and found the paper easy - they were less than happy. I hope the moderators got my paper after all that. We had to leave the paper on the desk and go home and the moderator was nowhere to be seen.

The fancy Institute premises is a tiny hop away from some less 'chic' roadside...

Luckily, it wasn't too far from the brand spanking new Faria Lima metro station, which, in itself, isn't all that fancy, but the metro itself... ??

The new metro is almost beautiful. The seats are padded (ok, the padding is pure imagination, but still) and the whole lot is sparkly new. The yellow was a site for sore eyes too. I could get used to this. Oh and no separate carriages!

The metro line lies between the series of glass doors, which slide open to allow one onto the carriage. A nice security man asked me if I was lost when I was taking this photo *laugh* I appeared appropriately flustered and moved on ; )

Two metros later, I got off at another new station. This one is about 2km away (about a 20 minute walk depending on pace) from home. I promptly got lost. This station is way above ground, as you can see. There were familiar landmarks on both sides. The info guy sent me in the wrong direction. 10 minutes later, I had my bearings in place and went walking...

The area is heavily industrial, but offered some intriguing sites : )

I got home in time to snag some lunch and head out to young Maria Fernanda. My other classes had all been cancelled for the day in honour of the 'big test'. Maria Fernanda decided she was going to be teacher for the day and wanted to teach her red monkey to speak English. Too cute.


  1. I'm really LOVING these photo's!!! So nice to have a view into your world!! I think I would pass out if I saw a tube that shiny and new!! Lovely!! I can see that MF brings you a lot of happiness at the moment. :) Love the reflection of all the hands in the window - effective - would make a good advertising campaign ;)

  2. What a great blog and fabulous pics! You had me hooked with the 2nd pic, all the hands :-)

    The new metro and station and cars are beautiful!

    I am still unclear why you had to take the test???

    GREAT blog and a wonderful peak into life!

  3. Even knowing (now) that saida means exit, I would still have no idea where to go. It almost looks like you need to walk sideways, do a little spin and go *that* way.

    Your pictures were interesting. I like looking through your eyes.

  4. This is just too cool! I am so glad you took us along! This blog was a brilliant idea. And no, I would have no idea which way to go even if the sign were in English. I agree with magickat, it looks like a dance move. It was kinda nice of the guy to see if you were lost. If you were taking pictures in a subway in the US these days, there is a chance you would be detained, or at least questioned, by the police.

  5. awesome pic.. makes me believe i was with you on this edusee..

  6. Katey, bring that ship over 'n I'll take you on a tube tour. We can ride the shiny tube up and down, so you get your fill of shiny... then we can move on lol Yes, MF is a ray of sunshine. It's hard to believe that when I met her, she spent most of her time trying to bite and pinch me. What would you advertise with the hands in the window? Window cleaner?

    Thanks Marty. I love the new metros. Now they just have to open at times when they'd actually be useful. The test? I'm trying out for one of the really big schools here. Schools pay less, but you don't have students constantly cancelling. There are also fabulous benefits like medical insurance, meal vouchers, transport vouchers, life insurance, etc.

    Kat, exactly!!

    Debbie, the sign got me totally. As for geting into trouble, I've become adept at sneaking photos. The nice thing about a cell phone is I can pretend to be texting or something, but be taking a photo. I have gotten into trouble for photography before. They're super-strict here.

    Tori, glad you enjoyed it.

  7. I agree with the others...I LOVED this photo heavy blog! It was great being taken on this trip and seeing your everyday places. Yes, the new metro sure does look shiny! :) And as for that exit sign? Egads! That's all I have to say.

    Feel free to do this again and again. I loved it.

  8. Quite the day. I would not care to keep all those metro routes straight. I hope you passed your test, and that some little "mouse" didn't sneak off with it! Thanks for all the pictures! My favorite is the last one.

  9. No I think it would be good to advertize the new supposed air conditioning on the tube here (only on the metropolitan line) but I haven't experienced it.

  10. Nice, Tint. I'm wondering--I'm so glad you have your cell phone now! Nice, nice nice! I like it a lot! I sure hope that your test wasn't pilfered by one of the other test takers! Keep us informed, please!

  11. Wow, Tint. I am soooo glad you got this new phone! :)

    And when will you find out about the results of the test? I'm so glad you nailed it and showed those who were sure you'd fail. ;)

  12. Sandy, I'll do it again. The trouble is that the photos are really poor quality and each needed a fair amount of post work to make them marginally viewable, so I put off posting this until I could pull together the time to do that.

    Faye, I get used to the routes, but have on more than one occasion gotten onto the metro going in the wrong direction. Fortunately, I make a point of leaving home early enough to accomodate that kind of mishap. As for a mouse sneaking off with my papers.... that is my unspoken dread. I have heard nothing back in spite the woman saying we'd hear back right away, so I'll call on Monday first thing to find out.

    Katey, you haven't experienced the air conditioning because it isn't there yet or because there are too many people to feel it? That's the problem we have. Some metros have fans, the others have aircon. Trouble with the aircon is that this is Brazil and as soon as the temps drop to 23/24, they turn on the heat (or it feels like it).

    Kat, I hope so too.... really hope so. I'm going to be madder than a spitting cat if it's gone astray.

    Kippy, I'm pretty sure I nailed it, but time will tell... assuming they got my papers, of course. What kind of place do the moderators vanish and leave the entrants to their own devices?


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