Friday, August 19, 2005

Life is still good here in SP. Since it's been over a week since I last updated, I can't really remember all the stuff I did. Rest assured it was all typically Brazilian. Ummm, what I do remember is that Wednesday and Thursday I went to Rio again, and it was lovely, despite the fact that I was caged up in Petrobras again for the whole two days. This time I noticed that not only are female Petrobras receptionists forced to wear blue and green polyester suits that look like they were lovingly preserved in a time capsule since 1974, they are mandated to wear either blue or green eyeshadow (LIBERALLY APPLIED). Wish I was kidding, buuuuut I'm not. Keep in mind that this is the country in which a popular airline (TAM) came up with the idea a few months ago that all its employees should wear flowing red capes. It goes along with the whole "flying" theme, I guess.

So, yes, Rio was super nice, as always. We stayed in the Pestana again and got our lovely free caiprinhas on the rooftop bar, and we also went to this amazing Lebanese restaurant called Amir in Copacabana. OH, and on a completely random note, and I had this revelation when I went for a walk on the beach Thursday morning. I saw this guy attempting to do some fancy footwork on the beach, kind of running sideways and crossing one foot behind the other, just like what my cross-country team used to do for warmup. Back in Ernest W. Seaholm High, we called that move "karioka," which I always assumed was a Michigan-ized bastardization of the word "karaoke," although why we would name a running exercise after a campy (and addictive!) form of entertainment imported from Japan is anyone's guess. BUT ANYWAY, I saw this guy doing karioka, and I was like, wait a minute, KARIOKA = CARIOCA, which is what people from Rio are called!!!!! It was like my whole life suddenly made sense.

Acouple other things I have done in the past week in a half that bear mentioning: I went to the Mercado Municipal, where they sell every kind of food imaginable (and whole pigs strung up by their noses), took several thrilling bus rides (like a rollercoaster ride without the hassle of safety restraints), toured another mall of São Paulo (Shopping Ibirapuera), went to an Argentine steakhouse (omg, amazing), went to a terrible, terrible club called Soul Sister, twice, even though it was awful both times, met up with another Stanny kid who is down here, went to Parque Ibirapuera like a million times, finally got over my fear and met with a personal trainer at Reebok to start lifting weights like a pro, and received my first gas bill!!! Oh yeah and in Rio I saw a sandcastle in the shape of a bunch of women bending over, with real thongs built into the sand. You have to admire the workmanship, if nothing else.

So that's that. In other news, my friends Matthew and Vicky are in their second-to-last week of work here before leaving to go back to CC in London and I am bummed. But two new trainees are coming in and they are rumored to be really fun, so all is well.

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