sexta-feira, 10 de dezembro de 2010

Xmas 2011

photo W.Massari
photo Zhoider
I guess that luck saw Graça and I leaving Saint Puy with the first signs of snow falling near Toulouse airport. After arriving back to the warmth of this part of Brazil I have had several emails from friends showing me the state of the European roads and in particular those in the UK. It is a long time since I not only lived in the UK but experienced very cold conditions and prolonged periods of snow, often it meant that I could not even get the land Rover out because of the ice on the roads let alone the drifts of snow. It would seem realistic to assume that this a normal cycle rather than abnormal Global activity, but then again whats normal, a reactivity of the world plates that have reactivated several volcanoes, may well be the answer. Here in Bahia it would seem that little changes, but there are signs that the rain fall is slightly more intense but not often, different to the South of Brazil, where São Paulo and Rio get constant rain, Bahia in general is a dry state, water that is and not beer or cachaça, in the interior of Bahia there has been a constant area of drought, the hope being that the government will one day give attention to the North and act to supply large areas with drinking water and water for small scale agriculture, here government incentives are large scale projects and not much in the way of artisan projects.
It seems that the move to rid the beaches of the bars may well get to Jaua next year, it as been hinted that this will happen and I see that Arembepe ( now getting a grassed and part covered praça at its entrance off the Estrada do Coco,Arembepe is certainly the most famous tourist point from the region, thanks to the remaining hippie village of the 60's and 70's decades. The word Arembepe comes from the native language Tupi-Guarani and it means “ “something that involves” us or enchant ourselves. About 150 years ago Arembepe was founded. In the beginning it was a big coconut farm. As years passed, it was changed, little by little, into an old fish village.In the 30's and 40's, the fishermen went out to the sea from several points of the coast of Camaçari, as Jaua beach and they used the area of Arembepe where the Hippie Village is situated as a lighthouse to help them to come back to coast, because of the high coconut trees. That way the first storage huts for fishing was asserted by material were created and, little by little, it became a village. As said “Manu”, a hippie of the 70's decade.
I have long held the opinion that investment similar to Arembepe would change Jaua and bring back a much better class of casual tourist, it is clear that the lack of foreign tourist in Jaua is the reason for the Prefeitura not investing time and money in returning Jaua to a more eco friendly resort, cleaning up the beach is just a starting point, the whole of the infra structure needs up dating and the whole of the road and pavement along the beach needs to be re constructed with areas to sit as well as walk. A move to limit the access of cars from parking along the sea front would also limit the amount of pollution, this includes noise as well as the general beer cans and coke bottles that are now left by the weekend tourist.
The whole of the North East does seem to be heading for some form of recognition by the politicians, but how that may be transfered into actual solutions to the Norths problems is anyones guess.
The site of the snow in Europe does make me feel that it is well worth the effort to stay the Summer in Brazil and then the Summer in France, i am no longer used to the cold, it gets deep into the bones of my legs when i am in Europe during the Winter months, attractive as the white landscape may be in the photos I am not tempted to swap Xmas in Brazil for one in Europe, the warmth is too tempting. I have even now met a French couple, in France, a small Medieval village near St Puy, that coincidentally spend six months here in Bahia and the rest of the year in France, small world indeed, for this couple adore Brazil and have been coming back for the last 40 years. So its possibly time for a lot of you out there to think about one trip to Brazil, do not take too much notice of the world news items that get to the TV sets, there is a lot of peace in Brazil and a lot of beautiful countryside to feast on, with the 2014 World Cup and then the Olympics in 2016, it is hoped that the government will make an effort to improve road travel in Brazil and the internal air travel, both are lacking investment.
St Puy must be very quiet over the Xmas period, with nearly all the English folk taking to see their families in the UK, on the contrary, Salvador is just starting this weekend to get the Xmas buzzzz, many folks going to the various islands for a more ethnic time of it and others traveling to the interior to see family and friends, mind you I am not one for Xmas and tend to let it slide by as much as I can.

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