Monday, May 19, 2008

3 reais 90 centavos won't buy you much

Last night while I was packing to leave for Brazil, I went through my bag of change and other assorted travel stuff, which in the secret location where my passport lives, and in there, I was able to pick out no fewer than 18 Brazilian coins, worth a total of about 2 dollars and 40 cents. There are also coins from other places that make sense, like the United States, Argentina, Uruguay, Peru, Colombia, Costa Rica and the Falkland Islands. The origin of the Somali coin is lost on me. I have never been to Somalia, of that I am certain.

Well, the multimetallic Brazilian coins should be excited to come back home. They can mix and whirl with their brethren, the 50 centavo that's smaller than the 25 included, even though it vexes me so. Other things coming back to Brazil include the Brazillian visa in my passport, which surely was manufactured here and my excellent black duffel bag which I bought here.

So here I am in Brazil, after a brutally early 3:55 AM pickup in Santiago and a pretty short and uneventful flight with that weirdly packed fruit that doesn't require any refrigeration, thanks LAN. A busride, then the metro and a bit of an uphill slog, and I found my hostel. I've instructed people to talk to me in Portuguese, which is great for my comprehension, yet I persist in being unable to string a sentence together.

While I am here in Brazil I will read books, buy books, drink coffee, maybe buy coffee, walk up and down hills that would make a San Francisco native feel right at home, and see baby Léo! When I was packing clothes, I erred on the side of more. I have been spit up on by many babies in my life. It is warm and gross and makes you want to change your clothes, stat. I will also bring a camera, because I have been around adorable babies before, and they make you want to take hundreds (okay, thousands) of pictures. Also got some gifties for the family.

So if you need me, I'm in Vila Madalena, Sao Paulo. I'm the one with the giant map and no sense of direction.

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