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Published: September 27th 2019
So I will get to the Brazil vacation a bit after, as I think the first thing we all need to address here is the cat bacchanal that was occurring in my backyard during the month of August…I can’t remember if I’ve mentioned this before, but there are quite a few feral cats that live in and around our property here in Santiago. Usually, they are nothing more than the occasional nuisance, maybe get into a garbage bag now and then, until August arrived…which is apparently when all the horny kitty’s come out to play! This included possible erotic meowing which kept us up at night, a number of loud cat fights, and oh… a dead cat that we found on our patio one Saturday morning (maybe forgot the safe word?)….poor Zoe was traumatized. After asking around at work, multiple Chilean sources confirmed, and it should be noted, confirmed independently to Steph and I, August is when a young cat’s heart turns to love….and perhaps to murder conspiracies, I'm not exactly sure. About the time I had had enough of this craziness and was searching the internet for various products to aid in our current predicament (Siri - search "firearm licensing
regulations in Chile"), things seemed to calm down a bit. The erotic meowing and cat fights ceased, and fewer cats were coming around...consequently, last year I do recall several kittens showing up outside our bathroom window around October, which based on a search of kitten gestation period, seems to provide more confirming evidence that August truly is "El Mes de Amor" for cats.
So now that I have passed along that crucial nugget of information to you, time to get on to our latest travels! Oddly coinciding to the first anniversary of our move to Chile, we packed our bags and headed off to Brazil. And after a year of functioning (sort of) in Spanish it was a bit of a mind trip to go back to basically understanding...absolutely nothing at all! My goodness does Portuguese sound different from Spanish. I mean, after a year, I'm not saying my Spanish is incredible, but I can function. I figured I could probably manage Portuguese, they seem close, but whoo-whee was I mistaken. The first few greetings in the Sao Paola airport had me scratching my head as the pronunciation is so different from Spanish, and even when I saw it
written I was struggling. Example, Pizza Hut, pronounced Pizza Hutch. Hey fellas, let's all head to the Hutch...I mean what. I did enjoy by the end of the trip saying Bom Ghia, Boa Noch (hello and good night), trying to imitate the accent. I tried to keep that up at work, but everyone just looked at me funny.
So anyway, after a long, albeit relatively smooth day of traveling, including a brief stop in the Sao Paolo airport to meet my parents, we arrived in beautiful Trancoso, in the Bahia state of Brazil. The welcoming committee at our Posada included freshly chilled coconut milk, right out of the coconut! Our accommodation, which was basically a rich Brazilian's holiday house which he had built for his family, was amazing, including incredible breakfasts and a super friendly and helpful staff (shout out to Wanderson). The beaches surrounding the area were incredible, as beautiful as I had ever seen, and we spent many a day checking out the various Beach Clubs, drinking Caprinhas and Gin and Tonics on the beach, and eating perfectly cooked fish caught freshly by local fisherman. The main square of the town, the Quadrado, was a grass field
Not for lovers of bright colours
overlooking the vast expanse of beach below, and situated around a 16th century church (designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site) at the far end. The buildings running the length had been repainted in various bright colours, and we spent most of our night's there sampling the restaurants, or wandering around taking in the sites, including the various wild horses that frequented the square. Anyway, the spot was idyllic, and if you ever have a chance to go, I highly recommend. I'm sure I would have not found this place unless our friends here in Chile had recommended it, but it was well worth the day of traveling to get there and back. To be in a tropical jungle, getting visited by monkeys during breakfast ('Makakos' Maelle would proudly announce to us in her best Portuguese, in an accent far superior to mine), walking beautiful deserted beaches, and meeting my parents in a Brazilian airport of all places, was such a great experience and a welcome change from the pace and hecticness of our Santiago lives. Anyway, and I've said it before, things aren't always perfect down here, but every so often I do have to pinch myself.
La Praia, Trancoso
Not to be confused with La Playa
close I just want to say this...the stereotype or Brazil beaches being full of scantily clad people in tiny bathing suits, well, it is quite accurate. Tall or short, big or small, there was certainly a lot of skin by the ocean...so while not always the easiest on the eyes, kudos to Brazil on being such such a 'body positive' country.
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