05 March 2009

In Country: Recife Landing

Last night we left Campinas and flew to Recife (pronounced hey-see-fe) which is an urban beach city of 2 million people. The flight was great but we didn't arrive at our apartment until about 3:00am. Consequently today was a foggy-minded day of orientation to a new city.

For lunch Fernando, Hope and I checked out a self serve restaurant about 1 block down from the apartment. While we were eating, a woman with a box of plants balanced on her head walked past the window. Of course I didn't have my camera with me to get you a photo, but I did buy one of her plants as a reward for her amazing feat of coordination. The plant now sits on the balcony table.

Speaking of the balcony, our apartment sits in a neighborhood of Recife called Boa Viagem. We will be here for about 3 weeks and decided an apartment with a kitchen would be better than a regular hotel. The balcony has a hammock similar to the type we used on the boat in Amazonas. Fortunately for us, the only swaying we'll be doing here is to the nice ocean breeze that blows in from the east.

If you look at a map, Recife is the closest point to Africa in South America. In fact, it's parallel with Luanda, Angola.

After dinner we went for a night walk on the beach. Hope and I chased each other while David and Fernando served as our bodyguards. Then, a warm rainshower interrupted our persecution of an albino sand crab who probably assumed the sunset would allow him a night's respite. Just when Fernando caught it in his hands the rain began in earnest. We left our prey and headed back to the apartment for dessert and coffee.

Our first day in Recife is just about over.

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