18 january Guarulhos (BRASIL)


Day spent entirely at Rocco's to celebrate three birthdays, including Nick's one (even if it is tomorrow).

In the evening we have another flight to the South of Brazil where, at last, we will travel as we like...

Leandro has been working on the barbecue for hours roasting everything that finds on his path... Sausages, wurstels, chicken, pieces of cheese, various types of meat... I have tasted the heart of chicken too....

Drinking litres of beer and coca cola... By the way: "Isn't there any water in Brazil? They drink only cocke...

We have been eating for hours, from 12am until late at night... They were chatting of the past in Calabria, playing games, laughing, joking, doing a walk and then returning to taste other tyoes of BBQ meat...

People, friends entered, ate something and walked away...
I was deeply impressed by the unity of this wonderful family of Italian origin now transplanted here in Brazil!

In the middle of the festivities: me, Nick and Fernanda had to leave the cheerful group to run to the airport, we have two flights...

What a stress... We never stop, but this is the life that I like, the one I have chosen...

We are sitting waiting for our flight, it is late and we risk to miss the connection in Curitiba... We'll see...

But despite the delay we manage to catch our plane.

We arrive at 3 a.m. in our "ambiguous" posada, we are in Foz do Iguaçu ....

Just set foot in this border town I felt the same thrill of Thurso, Scotland and Narvik, Norway, those solitary and silent frontier posts where something rarely happens. These places are really fascinating and mysterious at the same time.

19 january Puerto Iguazù (ARGENTINA)

The "Pousada Evelina" is cool, well-organized and above all very clean! The staff is leaded by Evelina (a 70 years old czech-Polish woman) and her daughters and grandchildren.

This morning, with a couple from Berlin (Ian and Katarina) and William from Amsterdam, we organize an excursion to the magnificent Iguazu Falls in the Argentinean side, the most extensive and spectacular one...

This place is the border between three countries: Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay. We even stopped on a hill where we had a clear view of all three countries.

Crossing the border with Argentina marked by the Parana River we begin to see everywhere blue-white-blue flags, the car plates are changing, the people speak Spanish and pay in pesos...

It is exciting when I thought I was trampling the soil of the Terra del Fuego, of tango, of Maradona, of the famous meat and of Italian immigrants...

After half an hour we get to the great natural park, we are in Puerto Iguazu!

We decide to enter the forest with a huge truck and, while we were following those little red sand pathways conquered after fighting with machete blows, I thought how difficult had to be the journey along the equator described by the South African Mike Horn...
I remember when he talked about the battles with machete blows, the meters conquered every day, two or three kilometers per day in the jungle, I was reading admired but did not understand in depth what he wanted to mean, now I know...
Those inaccessible bushes, those animals, the sounds that surrounded and wrapped you... who knows what was happening inside those bushes...

After a long journey we arrived at a pier and from there ready for a rafting below the falls of Iguazu!

[Nick]: "Our tour continues looking at all the other waterfalls with the weirdest names: dos hermanas, Borsetti, tres mosquetteros, la ventana, the most impressive is the "Gargana del diablo", a huge jump where you couldn't see the bottom ..

On the way back we stop for dinner in a restaurant in Foz do Iguaçu and stay around and have fun until late at night!


I was impressed by the tremendous force of nature seen at the "throat of the devil"... That immense mass of water that from several streams, small rivers flowed slow and calm and then suddenly throw from the rocks, jumping from the above making the fall: majestic!

That perpetual sound, those splashes of water that sometimes almost slapped you to say: "Have respect for what you see ..."
I saw people praying in front of the waterfall, other admiring it with glossy eyes, others lost in their deep thoughts...


I observe my flip flops.

Six years ago when I bought them for a few euros in a market in Belgrade I am sure that they would never expect or imagined to trample the lands, deserts, beaches and cities throughout the world, from Vietnam to Cape Verde, from Mexico to Paraguay, from Israel to Hong Kong...

...now I see them walking tired but trying hard to hold because there is still a long way to go...

 

Gracias Argentina

 

20 january Hernandarias (PARAGUAY)

[Nick]: "Quick breakfast and we catch the bus that will take us to Paraguay".

This is the only border that I know where you enter without any control.

The Paraguayan city on the border is called Ciudad del Este but as soon as we get there we soon catch the first bus on the street... destination: Who knows!

We will discover it along the way.
We pass next to the Itaipu dam, half an hour later and, after changing buses along the route, we stop to Hernandarias, a town famous for... we will discover along the way?!

[Nick]: "No goals or programs, we decide to get down in a road that seems quite busy (three dogs and a cat), an old lady approaches us and warns us to be careful with the video camera and the camera... Welcome!

A sandwich at "Tio Caye" and, just to give a meaning to this day, we venture in search of the "oficina de correo". Cool! But it seems that nobody has ever heard of this weird place (post office)...

We wander for a while as long as we find it: closed!

At least we have seen a little of anything, that we adore so much.

We go back to Ciudad del Este and we try again to find our post office... After much wandering, at last, here we are..."

Parana river divides Paraguay from Brazil. There is a long bridge that connects these two countries and the lack of customs controls suggested me the idea of crossing the entire bridge on foot ... "Cool I went to Brazil on foot !!!!"

Tonight we have the return flight to Sao Paulo.

Dinner, as usual at "Moraschin", usually ice cream at Cris... It's incredible how we have created our habitat in a place so far away...

 

Gracias Paraguay

21 january Praia Grande (BRASIL)

After two flights, three buses, two undergrounds and two km on foot we reach Pino, Nicolina and aunt Rosina in Praia Grande, near Santos. Paulista's beach.

The weather sucks... It is cold and raining... We wanted to spend our last few days in relax, at the sea and under the sun...

Me and Nick have decided to return to Sao Paulo tomorrow morning, at least we will enjoy the nightlife of the metropolis!

Praia Grande or as they pronounce it: "Grange", has a great beach... It seems like a desert near the Atlantic Ocean...

Too bad that these black clouds, wind and cold have spoiled everything.

It would have been fabulous to conclude our journey "on this beach to " tomar" some sun...

No worries!

23 january Sao Paulo (BRASIL)

While we were going to Sao Paulo and I was chatting to Leandro, between a samba and a pagode, suddenly the radio started to spread the notes of my favourite song: "I'm yours" by Jason Mraz. Wonderful.

With that huge jeep, with obscured glasses, sailing through the streets of that crowded metropolis, I was just alive and even more convinced of what I was going to tattoo on my body forever.

In the afternoon I did another tattoo.
This time by Cigano Aguillera.

After an hour or two, here we are, cut here, sterilizes it, mount the machine and: zzz zzz zzz
Pain! But at least I liked the work...

We conclude this intense day with Emerson and company in a beautiful clubs with live music, as we love, having a very good time. What wonderful people we met here...

24 january Guarulhos (BRASIL)

This journey comes to an end.

I have impressed in my eyes the faces of all those people who have welcomed us here. I have known, appreciated and loved them. These men and women by the immense longing for Italy equal to their big hearts.

I have admired their love, their always trying to fill us with a thousand of care and attentions. I was almost moved when, a moment ago, the 90 years old aunt Rosina (as I affectionately call her) hugging me said in a mixture of calabrese and Portuguese: "Excuse me if we failed to do something that you wanted!" "What? You were all fantastic"!

Of course we could have run our days in a different way, as we did in Foz do Iguaçu, but there will be many other opportunities for this, even because we will return many other times to this immense Brazil!


[Nick]: "My head often returns to the bus to Hernandarias, the road, the houses, the every day life... Me, Mark and William: pure adventure.

Destination: unknown.
When I'll be asked: "What about Hernandarias, what did you find there?" I will answer: "Nothing." That nothing: real and alive that we like to discover.

 

25 january Guarulhos (BRASIL)

Last hours. In these cases I hope the time passes quickly. I wish I could leave this house and go to the airport alone, without saying anything to anyone. I hate goodbyes.

[Fabiana from Sao Paulo, Brazil]: "Ano novo, vida nova. Comecei o ano com este sentimento, viver a bom ano. Voces nao imaginam or as a ajudou presencia de voces para que começar tudo bem. Fazia muito tempo que nao me amused and sorrir nesses como 15 dias. Obrigada. Conhecer uma parte da familia e dos amigos do homem que eu amo e ser contagiada humildade pela alegria e de pessoas como voces dos, Mark and Nicola, nao tem preços. Depois desses dias. A Italia nao estara longe, em outro continente, estara para gnardada always no coracao, junto com voces".

[Nick]: "It has been hard to say good-bye to these people. We will meet them again, I know."

 

Obrigado Brasil

 

 

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