Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Bom dia meus amores,

so things have finally settled down and we just started classes yesterday.

actually, the irony is i have to run home for lunch and beback in an hour or so i don~t have too much time right now to write. I just wanted to let you know that i~m doing ok and enjoying myself but finding a lot of the aspects of traveling in latin america a lot more difficult than i expected. so there are a lot less computers here than students so i dont know how often i~ll get to update the blog.

This has been such an eye-opening experience already, as tired as thatmay sound. I feel like i~ve been here a month but it~s only been aweek. it~s funny that our first week was just an intro to brazil and chilling out and so i guess we only have 5 weeks of class.

Basically, the progrma does its best to keep us extremely sheltered.they dont take us to any of the bad areas of town, and we live in the richest part of salvador, the 3rd or 4th biggest city in brazil. It's a great place, once you get used the staring and feeling like an awkward foreigner. Actually, as far as my companheiros have told me,this is relatively mild in terms of negative attention for latin america. I really havent gotten many cat calls, but i have been picking up guys like mosquitos!

My host family situation is pretty bad/awkward. Not the worst, but its just me and my 50 yo mom and 2 maids who she makes do everything. I hate it. She even has a bell. its terrible and she treats them likedogs really. The sweetest part is that i live in a penthouse with my own pool so i can escape there sort of and every night i enjoy a breath-taking view of the city.

Although its sort of dangerous to go out at night by yourself that's the only way i can enjoy the city and so i went out last night to this park near my place the very famous praca dois do julho for the bahainaindependence celebration. The park is beautiful and there were a tonof people out - the weather is gorgeous, esp at night - and theere wasa live big band playing a mix of brazilian dances and american pop/jazz -= i will survive in portuguese and english! These high school guys started dancing with me so it was a good time and luckily we had learned the dances that afternoon at school.

I think if I can start to meet the kids here then i~ll be able to see more of the city.i dont have any host siblings so that kind of sucks. But yeah last weekend we went to this beautiful island called morro desao paulo and it was pretty cute. I enjoyed the beach and the clubs at night, banana and chocolate crepes on the street, though i~m not a big fan of the cachassa which is what the national drink, caipirinha, is made of.

Everyone's always impressed when we whip out the respective aikido, capoeira a nd tae kwon too. Yeah def too much to write here but i/ll try to get some of it down onto the blog. mostly i~/m just going to have a huge journal though with all my thoughts and observations.

It's pretty crazy. For the first few days i couldnt get over the discrepancy btw rich and poor. im still trying to figure it out and make some conclusions about it. i dont know quite what to do with myself.

Write back and let me know how things are going. debbie, can you send me the link again to the savvy traveler^? please write me at gmail because I can t really check nu account.

Lots of love and can't wait to hear from you!!!
dena
(day-na)

1 comment:

YiRan said...

dearest dena,
i'm thrilled to hear that you're "picking up guys like mosquitoes," as you so eloquently put it! it certainly seems like you're living the high life with two maids and a private penthouse and pool...i just hope it gets less awkward with your host mother as the weeks go on. keep us posted!