Sunday, November 18, 2007

Another Weekend Ends :(

Our 4 day weekend is drawing near an end, sadly enough. It has flown by, as all of our time here has, but we got a lot done and played some too!
After I blogged last night, we went to a small party that Xavier (one of the guys that went with us to the waterfalls) and his family was hosting. There were about 13 of us there. He grilled a bunch of different meats and his wife made rice, farofa, vinagrette, and mandioca. We ate too much, as usual, but we had no regrets . . . it was way yummy!

I got a free Portuguese lesson while I was there too. Xavier's ten year old daughter brought out a bunch of children's books in Portuguese and tested my vocabulary. It's amazing how many words you don't know when you first start learning a new language. And really funny how if you asked a 2 year old Brazilian kid, they would know the words for things like butterfly, grass, caterpillar, gosling, etc. I failed my test pretty miserably, so she sent the books home with me so I could study! Last night Eric was sitting on the couch looking over the Portuguese version of Pinocchio when he looked up at me and said, this has hard words in it! All I could do was agree. With any luck though we'll be reading at a 1st grade level before too long. ;)

a few of us from the party last night

Yesterday Eric and I got a feel for just how laid back Brazilians are here . . . While the appliances we purchased are going to be delivered to our apartment once we take possession, the Sony Wega we bought was actually a floor model, so we had to take it with us. We were discussing how funny it was going to look to go walking into the hotel with a 29" television (and maybe how much more suspicious it was going to be to check out with it!) When we entered the lobby, one of the very English-fluent staff members, a guy with a great sense of humor and jokes with us a lot, was working the front desk. As Eric was toting the tv towards the elevator, he looked up and told the guy "We broke the TV in our room, so we just bought a new one." The guy looks at Eric and the TV, said, "OK, no problem" and then went back to looking at something on the computer screen. That wasn't quite the response Eric thought he'd get! It was pretty funny though! Eric laughed and let the guy know he was just kidding and that we were actually buying a few things for our apartment. But, it didn't really seem to matter to the guy one way or another. This is why Brazilians tell us we'll live longer if we adapt their attitude and disposition: no worries!

We spent this morning at the feria (the big market Eric wrote about a few weeks ago) to try to do a little Christmas shopping. Then, we made a trip out to the single Wal-Mart and Sam's Club in this town of 5 million occupants. (Yeah, seriously, Athens, GA has 2 Wal-Marts and we only have one in all of the greater Belo Horizonte area. And even more disturbing . . . no Target!) You don't realize how much you take those places for granted until you don't have them at your disposal. There are just some things that I don't know where else to buy them if not some giant superstore! There are a few things that we need cheap versions of just to get us by until our air shipment arrives with our 'good' apartment things we wanted from the US (which will be sometime in late December probably.) Where else can you find a cheapo sauce pan so you can do some sort of cooking until your Calphalon arrives???

This afternoon we spent some much needed time laying out by the pool at the hotel. We have spent the better majority of the last 4 days running around and have spent a bunch of time on our feet, so it felt pretty good to just lay around for a little bit! We came in a little while ago, got showers, and now I think we are going to order room service and watch a movie tonight (Mission Impossible III is on tv in English with Portuguese subtitles.)

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