quinta-feira, 27 de maio de 2010

Return to Latin life

Well this must be for Betty, I have been ticked off about getting so far and no further with this blog, but I suppose it is one thing starting a project and another to find reasons for continuing writing. I have in all honesty had problems with my eyesight, a few minutes of writing will give me some pain in my right eye that lasts for a couple of days, the same can be true with driving the car with the windows open. Still I feel that I might try to access another attitude to the Blog and try to program myself a little bit better than I have done.
Well Betty I never quite arranged everything before I left St Puy, but what I have done is a good base for my return and the next time will certainly get things moving and I am sure that I will form the base for a new start to my work in France, including the finalizing of my work registration and the social security number along with the acquisition of a Serif number, all which will allow me to organize work legally and with advertizing, this with the work on my little house will set me in the community and give folks a local workshop for new furniture and the repairs of any antiques they may have. Leaving France and my friends there is not a comfortable feeling, sadness at the loss of their conversation and their kindness and the feeling of belonging to the community in a way that Brazil never does.
I had to run the risk of volcano dust on my return to Brazil, the flight was first from toulouse to Amsterdam, that had been closed the day before my flight and so had Edinburgh, so it was only when I arrived at Toulouse that I had an idea that I would indeed fly that day, the same was true for the flight to Edinburgh from Amsterdam, but the later flights on the Saturday had already been cleared by the change in the wind direction and thus giving clear skies for me to fly to Paris and then São paulo and on to Salvador.
Well I arrived in Salvador on the Saturday night and Sam picked me up, had a chat to him about the state of play in Jaua and what news there was for the last three months, a useful exchange to make sure that I could keep up with the local gossip and not put my foot into anything. When I arrived back at my flat it was near mid night, there was slight drizzle but it was a warm breeze, Sam parked outside the gate and I tried to find where I had slung my keys, a bit f a puzzle since I had changed my mind about at the last minute of where I would put them before leaving Michaels house, I had been woken by him at 3.50 in the morning and I was due to leave by taxi at 4.00, so a bit of a rush and no time to think carefully about what I was doing.
I discovered the keys and we enetered the apartment, to find that the several weeks of severe rain had left my place soaking wet and the ceiling still dripping with water from the last days rain. Sam left and I opened all the windows and doors to see the condition of everything and try to get rid some of the smell of the damp and mold that now covered almost everything in the apartment. Having mopped the worst of the water and tried to get the bed sorted with some sheets i managed to get the computer working from one phone line and sent some emails to tell folks that I had arrived safely, then I decided it was too late to do any more and had a shower and went to bed. Missing some hours of sleep and a change of time by 5 hours, meant that I woke very early and realised that the time away had also meant that there had been a loss of power in the apartment, thus all the contents of the fridge and freezer were spoilt, the freezer was by far the worst since it was stocked almost entirely with fish and prawns , meant to by for quick food when I returned. The smell at cleaning this and the rest of the apartment was enough to put me off any hunger for the whole of Sunday, so when I went out in the late afternoon for a drink at Pandoras bar, and then was met by a friend who asked if I would like to go to Butchs party, it seemed a good idea. Butch I had met for just a couple of minutes at the front of Pandoras bar, a few weeks before I flew to Europe, so in fact I did not and still do not know him well. The party was a bit of fun in watching the local social circle, very much a show of your social position by spending money on a party but not a time for good conversation, as well as the fact that Butch is newly married, new to Brazil and the main bulk of folks where from Salvador.
Monday was the day for seriously trying to clean the fridge and some of the apartment and then the reinstatement of the battery for the car, which gratefully started and is still running OK, put air into the tyres of the Fusca and the Gol and then went to the large supermarket in Lauro de Freitas and bought cleaning gear and food for myself, on my return I met my gardner and chatted over the problems that had arisen over the three months, including one water pump not working and again several fruit trees dying, this is every time I am away. I was planning on meeting up with Miriam at some point that day but as it happened she passed by in her car and stopped to chat. The main point of the conversation was to organize some one quickly to strip the roof coverings of both the house and the flat and get a new water tight covering on before any more rain could leave me back at day one. Miriam was with Joy and suggested I return to her house for some coffee and a snack, which was very welcome and quickly accepted, I locked up and jumped in the car, my second day was still with out much in the way of food, a cheese roll and a banana had been the days food up till then, so the fact that it was a hamburger did not stop me eating it.
Yesterday I waited in for the workers to arrive, they had 7.00 in the morning, to do the roof, to strip it and re site the timbers much higher and also take out a section of the up stand to allow for the covering to over shoot and no longer use an internal gutter, it was 10.07 when they arrived and I then had to wait till 13.45 to get away to Salvador in order to return my new mobile phone to the Nokia repair centre. I had also noticed that my IPVA and the licence tax was due for the car and decided I would pay both at the same time, however the Nokia assistance had for my convenience, the notice on the door told me this, moved to another location in Salvador, and as I am not very sure of any where in the city I had to try and find the location of the new shop, I am still not the wiser since the computer now is so slow I cannot log on to Hotmail or find a number of internet sites. I stopped at the airport and paid my car tax before returning to Jaua, collecting a large bottle of freshwater on route. Two friends have recently split up and by coincidence or not I met one of them when I returned and then recieved a phone call from the other asking to meet me for a drink at Pandoras , late last night, a bit of a sandwich feeling as I try to keep clear of any comments that one makes about the other and what one feels about the other.
My television as finally dried out enough to start functioning, not well but at least it gives me some company at the moment, for the last three weeks I have enjoyed good company and nice conversation, so I am back to a solitary existence and a very slow internet connection.
Last nights bar conversation was much to do with the latest killings in the area, a policeman had been shot near Jaua, he in fact was giving a radio interview whilst still in his car with his wife, seems strange that one with his experiebce should park, remaining motionless and chatting on the mobile phone, in an area that is by any standard some what isolated, the result was that the live braodcast was cut short by three assailants how shot him, now the tv is full of the news of his death and the locals are worried about their security, crazy place at the best oif times but over the top when there is little prompting.

Today i have the complete workforce, as per usual they say two weeks and then try to do the lot in one, leaving me in the end with not all the work being finished satisfactorily, it is a story that always reprats itself since no one has the pride in their work or the ability to finish a good job, they are only interested in how quick they can get the money in their pockets. Still it will hopefully resolve the damp problem and I can in the future leave the house and apartment knowing that it will at least be dry inside when I return, the fine details will have ti be accepted as not defined. Having cleared some of the capinsanta, a plant that is excellent for tea, from aroud the gate and spotted a good collection of maracuja, passion fruit, under the foliage, i also spotted that Cupim had returned to the corner of the servants quarters, so I had bought some venom to kill them off. This was a different sort to the one I have used before and is applied by brush to the timbers, so I entered the front of the flat and moved the folding chair to get access to the corner of the roof, an open tiled roof, and as I reached up and placed the brush full of venom onto the small colony of termites, I became aware of a scene a bit like Star Wars, I was not wearing my glasses but could see a mass of flying insects, it was a hive of small wasps that had stuck themselves to the underside of the sink, I backed off quickly but could feel the stings in my arms, feet and hands, thankfully just in those places, it has left my fingers a bit numb and some sharp pain at the point of the stings in my legs, feet and arms but not much more, a lesson to be more careful when entering a place that as been empty for some time, here as in France there are snakes and bees, both can bite rather quickly and without warning.
I am now starting to settle in to the Brazillian lifestyle and get back to conversation in Portuguese, also my self catering and just a few weeks now to the World Cup......

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