Diary/Photo Journal

Week of January 27, 2008

Well, as most lengthy travels have in common, you start slowing down a bit near the end.  We started off this week back at the beach and a few days catching the sun in between torrential downpours common to the summers here in this part of Brasil.  What was not so common, was the ensuing flooding and mudslides in the nearby countryside. 

The rain cometh and so does the flood

Fortunately, the buildings are made of brick and concrete


We ran back to Curitiba for a family day as we were to have lunch with Gerson's Aunt Marilda and Uncle Sebastiao and then dinner with his cousins.  While visiting his Aunt and Uncle, Gerson's Aunt brought out some great pictures of Gerson's history.  One picture was especially touching as it was taken less than a month before Gerson's mother died of a stroke at the age of 32.

The dinner was also notable as like the last time we visited, they indulged us in carangueijo (crab) and we cracked, cut and chewed our way through 72 crabs.

I loved the first picture:  Felipe, Rodrigo, Flavia and Bruno - aren't they adorable!
(click on the links attached to their names for what they are like today)

Delvair Luci Betinardi De Souza e Silva (Gerson's mom one month
before she died), Marjorie, Gerson and Lincoln

Gerson's grandfather (Francisco Betinardi) in his store circa 1970's

Gerson with famous recording artist Joao Caetano (and Gerson just
found the signed album he has from him)

One of many

They are salt
water crabs
that are found
in the mangroves

Love the hairy legs

After our stint back in Curitiba, we headed back to the beach and were happy to see more sunshine and less rain.  We had a nice visit from Gerson's cousin, Carlos Vinicio and his friend, Felipe.  As Carlos Vinicio was staying an hour south of us and his friend was coming from an hour north of us, they decided to meet in the middle and stayed and played with us. 

Carlos Vinicio and Felipe enjoying the view
My beach stud (yeah, right!)
Gerson, Felipe and Carlos taking a walk
"heads up" volleyball in the pool

The storm cometh

The next few days were just lazy days at the beach and awaiting the start of Carnaval, and I don't think I need to explain what that means! 

However, seeing as we are admittedly getting older and we relish our peace and quiet, we enjoyed a relatively calm Carnaval with Marjorie and Carlos and their friends at the beach.  We had a lovely dinner (with the same family that hosted us for New Years) and spent a little time at the beach party the condominium complex hosted.  Bonfires, torches and fireworks lit up the sand and the people's smiles and enthusiasm lit up the night.

Carnaval on the beach    

Just an easy week and starting to contemplate our return to the States (but not too much).

Week of February 03, 2008

Not much to report for this week as we just chilled at Marjorie's house in Curitiba, said our good-byes to the family and friends, took advantage of our last chance to eat our favorite foods and begrudgingly packed our things to go home. 

We had a fantastic time in Brasil and especially traveling through Brasil's history.  We do not know when we will return; however, Brasil is never far from our hearts.

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