Three Wishes


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South America » Brazil » Santa Catarina
December 24th 2010
Published: September 30th 2017
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Geo: -27.6337, -48.4552

Final day in Santa Catarina - not having done a whole lot these past four days, I was determined to check out another part of the island in the last few hours before my flight to Rio. The simplest option was Praia Joaquina and its adjacent sand dunes, which are popular for sand boarding. Had the weather cooperated during previous days I would have tried this out already, but of course that never happened. And as for today ... there just wasn't enough time.

According to the hostel, Praia Joaquina is about a 40 minute walk away - wrong! It ended up taking me almost an hour to walk there, so either the hostel's estimate is wrong, or there is some short cut that I missed! I could've simply taken a bus there, but my logic was this - given the infrequent bus times around here, I would've beaten the bus by a good 20 minutes if I left immediately on foot, rather than wait around nearly an hour for the next bus. Plus, it's been a rather sedentary few days here, so the physical activity would be welcome. But ... before I even made it to the dunes, the bus drove by ... sigh ...

Anyway, the dunes were neat, but not nearly as extensive as the guidebook described them to be. The sand boards were also laughable - some were not much than a piece of wood with two pieces of rope punched through them for use as footholds. Not many that tried had much success and the few that did, ended up bailing anyway, since the chintzy little footholds weren't enough to keep them firmly planted on the board.



So of course, on the day that I leave the sun came out - this was a bad thing today, as I had forgotten my hat and also neglected to put on any sunscreen. Apparently, southern Brazil also has a hole in the ozone layer above it, so I ended up burning my face slightly. Luckily, it wasn't as bad as the sunburn I suffered a few years ago in Chile - I'm still traumatized by that!

Other than the trip to Joaquina, today's activities consisted mostly of eating ... and more eating ... not being sure if anything would be open by the time I landed in Rio since it was Christmas Eve, I
Damn Bus ...Damn Bus ...Damn Bus ...

Beat me to the beach!
had lunch before heading to the airport, and then followed that up with another light lunch at the airport. Then I ended up eating the snack that was served on the plane and just for good measure, I had also picked up some bananas, nuts, and two types of cookies before boarding the plane. I don't have many fears in life ... but the fear of going without food is obviously one of them!

But all my worries were for naught - after arriving at Hostel Harmonia, I found that the staff was kind enough to provide a dinner for all its guests this evening, free of charge. The spread looked great - rice, salad, what looked like some type of schnitzel, and dessert. Unfortunately, my three previous lunches meant I was already full, and only able to have a few small pieces of cake.

So while this won't be my first Christmas away from home (at last count, this will be my fifth in a row), this will be my first spent without any family or friends. But we were quite fortunate tonight to be paid a visit by good ol' Saint Nick, who came by bringing
Mmmm ... Lunch #1 ...Mmmm ... Lunch #1 ...Mmmm ... Lunch #1 ...

Chicken and a feta-like cheese sandwiched between two slices of multi-grain bread, and stuffed with carrots, lettuce, and tomato. Pretty tasty for such a healthy lunch, but the papaya juice was pretty blah. Papaya is great to eat, but doesn't make for the best juice.
us some Christmas cheer and gifts, and then drank some of our beer. I guess Brazilian Santa doesn't go for milk and cookies, and it's only fitting that a Brazilian Santa comes for a beer and possibly a booty call.

Santa came by and one by one, gave us all a bracelet, carefully tying it on with three knots. We were all told to make three wishes and that as each knot came undone, one wish would come true. So what did I wish for? To have a killer trip in Brazil, which is already true thus far, to have a job that I love, and to find true love. Though these are all separate things, it made me realize that there is a potential for all three things to come true in Brazil, through one serendipitous scenario. So what might this scenario be?

If I were to fall in love with and marry a Brazilian sugar momma, who earns her money as a bikini/lingerie model, and who subsequently pimped me out to all her bikini/lingerie model friends - it'd be killing three birds with one stone! How fortuitous that would be!


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Mmmm ... Lunch #2 ...Mmmm ... Lunch #2 ...
Mmmm ... Lunch #2 ...

Pastel de carne (meat) and an empada, a tart-like pastry stuffed with chicken and catapury, a Brazilian cream cheese. The pasteis here are all baked and not fried, leading me to wonder if people in this area are more health conscious than those in Sao Paulo, where the pasteis are all fried. This is a beach culture here, after all. Anyway ... the empada was much better than the pastel, whose crust was a bit too tough and chewy. And once again, the juice was a disappointment - flavourless mango. Oh - and though he's been hiding for most of this trip, L'il Buddha finally made his first appearance. I think I'll need the good luck charm, since it was rather unusual that the check in desk at the airport asked for my next-of-kin contact info. I don't remember being asked for that on any previous flight I've ever had - do they often have problems here????!?!?!?
Yech ... Lunch #3 ...Yech ... Lunch #3 ...
Yech ... Lunch #3 ...

I wasn't all that hungry after lunch #2, but then this was served on board. A hot dog? A hot dog stuffed with little fried matchstick potatoes? It was as bad as it sounds but of course, I still ate it. Can't risk going hungry tonight, can we?
Santa Came to Rio For a Visit ...Santa Came to Rio For a Visit ...
Santa Came to Rio For a Visit ...

I loved how one of the hostel guests immediately jumped up and said "I want a picture with Santa's two little helpers!" Can you blame him? Santa was nice enough to bring gifts for all, though bringing his two hot little helpers was PLENTY nice enough of him ...
Three Wishes ...Three Wishes ...
Three Wishes ...

A bracelet, which I suspect is a Brazilian tradition. I believe the bracelet says "A Souvenir from Santa (or the Brazilian equivalent)"


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