Got blues, got blues, Got the Saint Louis Blues
Trip Start Aug 09, 2006
53Trip End Ongoing
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Anywho, so I did change the flight to Uruguay to February 27th. Which means I get to be here for Carnaval. Sweet. Took the bus/boat over to Morro de São Paulo. Wasn´t planning on going there because I knew it was touristy and was afraid of the prices, but man am I glad I went. Really really cool. I was informed by the posada woman though, that I had to leave in 3 days because it would be November soon and there were reservations (even though I was the only person in the whole place at the time). Took a boat around the island, did some snorkeling in the reefs (there are even floating bars way out there), stopped at a couple old towns (overrated), and visited Boipeba
Left Morro de São Paulo for Praia do Forte, just north of Salvador. How complicated was this trip...ugh. Boat,bus,walk,bus,ferry,bus,bus,walk. In that order. This was kind of when I decided no more going way out of my way just to check out any more beaches. I´ve seen plenty of awesome ones. Just pick one and stay there! But Praia do Forte is headquarters of the Projecto Tamar which is trying to protect sea turtles. Went there and saw I think 5 different species, eels, fish, rays, and nesting sites. Reminded me of SC and the little guys running out to the ocean after hatching. Was cool. After that, walked out to some castle that some lady told me was supposed to be cool
Next, was ready to leave and wanted to go to Maceió, but the only way to get there was to go back to Salvador to catch a new bus going back north. All this, along with the hassle of getting there, made the Praia do Forte stop a little annoying. But hey, I got nothing but time, right? So, went back to Salvador. After the 4th time in Salvador in just a month, it is starting to really rub off on me. I like it there quite a bit now. Kinda bummed around the beach for the day, met up with a friend living there after she got off of work, and then barely caught the 10pm bus (I like the overnight buses so I don´t have to pay for a night in a posada). Oh yeah, a big Bahian food dish is acarajé. Only made by Bahian women and I guess the recipe is secret. Don´t really know how to describe it. I´ve seen it described and don´t think it does a good job
So a month later and I finally left Bahia!! Can´t believe I was there so long. Really liked Maceió. Was very chill I thought, but also a big city. All these places I´ve been staying at are right next to the beach so that is always a plus. Maceió, or my neighborhood of Ponta Verde, actually reminded me of A1A in south Florida a little bit. Decided to take a walk downtown, which turned out to be a big wild goose chase. Considering I didn´t exactly know my way around, and yet my brain seems to still say "lets just wander around and explore!". So after I get there I´m thinking, man, this town sucks over here...Nothing open, no people around, quiet, just nothing. It was like a ghost town. Then it ocurred, I think I remember that Nov 2 is some kind of holiday. Turns out it was. Ugh. Went on a "Nove Ilhas" tour which goes around on boat showing 9 pretty little islands. The helicopter view from above, postcard shot, is really pretty. Unfortunately, we were in a boat, so the tour was pretty much crap. Putted around, stopped to swim and chill, the putted around some more. Next day was more worthwhile, going out to Praia Gunga. First stopped at Praia Frances (nice) and Barra do São Miguel (nice) before Praia Gunga (totally sweet)
So, I caught the bus to Maragogi. How is it? You´ll have to ask somebody else, because I slept right through the stop. Finally dawned on me when, at a later snack stop, I saw a plaque saying something about the "Governador do Pernambuco". Okay..guess I´m in the wrong state. So, I guess I´m going to Recife now. First thing you notice is that is very very HOT. Like burn a hole right through you hot. There is metro connecting the bus station to downtown. Felt back at home on the subway! And I´m kinda getting good at the bus system in these big cities. Anyway, made it to Boa Viagem (in Recife) where I´m staying. In a place above a Mexican restaurant and Capoeira/Tai Boxing place. Huh? Went to a nearby town, Olinda, that is supposed to be the cultural hive for the area, which Recife is apparently not supposed to be. Old town, with old buildings and streets and stuff. Your typical pretty little colonial Brazilian town. Very hilly too, which meant some pretty cools views down on the ocean and Recife. [By the way: Recife= "reef" in Poruguese and Olinda was named because the dude that first saw it said "O Linda!" How Beautiful
November 15 is a holiday, the day Brazil became a republic. So I guess its almost like Brazil gets two Independence days
At this point, I had been in Recife for what felt like forever, and since the early plan of going to Fernando de Noronha fell through (um, expensive anyone? and no time), I was more than ready to get on. So, off to Natal ("Christmas"). And of course, you are greeted to the city by huge lit up Christmas decorations. 3 kings, trees, etc.. Side note - it is pretty strange seeing the stores all decked out with Christmas stuff for sale. Holly, garland, fake trees, all that wintery stuff just looks really out of place when you´re sweating buckets. So anyway, I got into Natal (getting to the hostel was another adventure, since I´m always too stubborn and cheap to take cabs and the rodoviária is always far from where you want to go) and didn´t leave my bed for a day and a half. Really sick. Same thing I had back in Prudente. The same symptoms, and circumstances surrounding both times. Basically just too many days in a row of too m much night life and then doing stuff during the day, so body got no rest
For the first time in the trip, I had to start thinking about time. Christmas is coming up, and I need to be in Vitória then. VERY far from here. And there still was so much to do in the north. So, I split from Natal, and decided to scrap everything between it and São Luís. What?! No Jeri? I guess I have something to look forward to upon returning here! 29 hours from Natal to Fortaleza to Parnaíba to São Luís. Wasn´t exactly fun, but I didn´t go stir crazy and it wasn´t too bad. So I got in last night, and today went around looking at the town. Lots of old, cool looking buildings and stuff. Gonna have to write more on São Luís later since I am still here! But the big thing I´m looking forward to is the park near here. Going tomorrow. Last note, it is a little bit frightening that, for the first time in a long time, my life is basically planned out for a month. I already know where I have to be on certain days. I like the other way of traveling better. Hopefully, it wont be another month or whatever before I update this thing! As much as you don´t like waiting, I don´t like jogging the memory so far! Oh yeah, I almost forgot, Happy Turkey Day!!