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– Brazil Journal – Week 8, 5 de Agusto – Joseph Thieman

August 7, 2012

Brazil Journal Week 8 August 5

I am starting to get settled into this new city finally.  Last week I was able to close the door on many things that I needed to take care of.  First was the registration with the Federal Police here. They had very unpredictable hours, but after four trips there I was able to finally get it finished.  I also was able to get registered for classes, which took a lot more trouble than I had expected.  I fixed both the showers in the house where I’m staying, and painted some furniture.

On Wednesday I went to a small town about three hours north with my landlady and new friend Nanci.  One of her daughters lives there with her four kids.  We went with the intention of just visiting her family, bringing back one bed for me, and seeing a couple of waterfalls, but things would not end up working out like that.  We arrived shortly after dark, and we were met with confusion, because she did not know where her daughters new house was.

When we found it, her daughter and son-in-law were still at work, and I found myself in a house with two 9 month old twins, a 3 year old, and a sixteen year old.  I was reminded for the next couple of days why I am glad I don’t have any kids.  Lia and Mateus both work from about 6pm till 11 on weekdays, leaving there 16 year old daughter and a bad babysitter with a 5 year old Elis, and the twins.  Anytime I was in the house with everyone, I was the on-call trumpeter for Thomas, who would only stop screaming when I played my trumpet with a harmon mute.

One of the things we intended on doing in Muzambinho was to bring back some furniture that Nanci had left there from when she was helping after the kids were born.  There was way more furniture than could possibly fit in one cargo van, so we went from shop to produce shop trying to procure a truck and driver to deliver all of her stuff to Campinas.  It turned out that when we found someone, the only time he could do it was the very next morning at 3am.  So instead of seeing waterfalls and relaxing, I spent the total of my time there holding babies, and moving furniture.  We ended up leaving for Campinas that night at 10, arriving back here at around 12:30, only to wake up at 6:30 to unload a huge truck.

The city of Muzambinho is a wonderful little city.  The hills of the streets can only be compared to San Fransisco, except really old.  All the streets there are either made of dirt, or stone bricks that are around a hundred years old.  The city is all based around a park that has one-way streets on both sides, enclosed by a church and the school.  The interior streets are lined with shops, and stores, and outside of that are the houses.  Several times I was able to walk the streets by myself, and it is the kind of place that it seems everyone says hello.  I felt very safe in the town, even though my Portuguese is still not entirely functional.  Overall it was a good week, and I am looking forward to classes starting here in an hour.



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