29 July 2007

Freezing Fingers

So right now I´m in Porto Alegre, which is the capital of the southernmost state in Brasil. It is FREEZING here. Probably in the 30s or 40s.

Okay so we embarked on our journey throughout the south on Tuesday. We spent the entire day on the bus, from 6 am until midnight. I read Harry Potter 7 and we watched movies. The countryside here is so beautiful. Rolling hills as far as the eye can see. I´ve been taking pictures, don´t you worry. I just had to put on my beanie. Yikes it´s cold!

The next day we went to the Brasilian side of the Iguaçu Falls, which was beautiful and wet. We walked along this trail on the side of the cliff thing to a point down at the bottom of the Devil´s Throat, which is where the huge waterfalls is and the precipitation got us all so wet. I look hideous in my pictures. Really. I´m not in many of them for this reason. (Right now I´m using the McInternet at McDonalds for free! Keane is playing right now. You´ve got to love McDonald´s, really.) There were rainbows everywhere you looked. There aren´t really words to describe it. Sorry. Niagra Falls does not even begin to compare.

Later that day we went to Itaipu, which is the energy plant where they use the falls for electricity. It was pretty boring and I stopped listening to the tour guide. I don´t even listen when it´s in English, so Portuguese is much harder. We crossed over into Paraguay while we were there, because they share the plant. It´s weird because they have to speak some type of Portanhol to communicate there. I would think that that would be difficult. The fun thing about this place was that we had to wear orange hard hats with little hairnets underneath. A couple of the guys broke out and did the Village People dance, which was hilarious. One of the guys, Bret, is growing out a moustache and always wears a bandana and aviator sunglasses. He looks like he stepped right out of the 70s. José also wears the aviators as well. YMCA will never be the same for me.

The next day we went to the Argentine side of the falls. I got my passport stamped again. We walked so much but it was great. I felt like I was in a tropical paradise. It was funny because I didn´t know what language to speak to other people to be polite. I just stuck with Spanish, Portuguese and English depending on the circumstance. Ordering lunch was an adventure. We could pay in reais, so I did, but I had them break a real to give me some pesos. That night we went to a churrascuria and they had these two guys playing for the restaurante. One was playing the harp and the other the guitar. They were Argentinians and so they sung in Spanish. They were so funny and sold a bunch of CDs to our group.

The next day we had an even longer bus ride to get here to Porto Alegre. I should mention that our bus is a bit ghetto and smelly. The bathroom door doesn´t stay shut, so we had to use a blanket to tie to the handles to keep it shut, but it still smells so bad. I try to stay toward the front because of this but it still smells and that gets mixed with the ammonia smell of the air freshener that they spray when it gets bad. always an adventure. Oh and heaters don´t exist here. Down here in Porto Alegre they might, my room does (YAY!) but no where else really.

Church today was good but cold. We started out with sacrament meeting, which was a change. We doubled the attendance there. I think the chapel had a heater, but sunday school was freezing. I really really appreciate the conveniences that we have in the US. I can only imagine how miserable it must be here during the Winter.

Well I think that´s about it. Life is good here. My love for Brasil grows with every day.

1 comment:

  1. My how some of our Brasil experiences mirror each other. We went to that same restaurant and the same singers entertained us. It was a lot of fun.
    We had a lot of fun at Itaipu. We must have had a better tour guide.
    Our drive back from Rio was the stinky bathroom drive from Hades. Seriously. I got so sick.
    Oh, Alicia from 101 and 102 got her mission call to Paraguay Asunción Norte. She was excited. She said that she was happy, too, because she'd be close to Brasil. That part made me laugh.