Friday, September 20, 2013

brazilian birds

 Okay, we're hanging out in a city, so we don't see a lot of wildlife.

This is the wildlife that comes to visit me.

But we did go to the zoo!

Don't worry, I took some photos.  (Two or three are even good enough to share!)
I tried to get a photo of the baby ocelot, because it is the cutest thing on Earth, but they all came out blurry.  It's exactly like when you try to take a picture of a kitten - he's always on the move.
Anyway, here are some more feathered friends.

Two black swans having a bit of a chat.

This ostrich wanted to have a chat with us.

I'm pretty sure he wants to be liberated.

This guy's got an impressive beak.

This bird has no head!  The amazing head-less wonder!

It reminds me of those scenes on tv shows where a criminal gets handcuffed and walked to the police car, but tries to duck his head out of sight.
He's a condor, by the way.

Monday, September 16, 2013

jaguar gentleman - in the mail, and at the zoo

This well-dressed dandy was a delight to find in my mailbox from one extra-special Marsie!

Stay tuned, because sometime in early October I will manage to clearly photograph Marsie's other submission to the Anthropomorphic Mail Art Project  - and it is beautiful, I assure you.

Marsie, as a mini-apology for my slowness in posting, please accept this photograph that I took on Saturday at the zoo in Sao Carlos, Brazil.

I really wanted to pet him.  I am pretty sure he wanted me to pet him, too.
Isn't he just gorgeous?
I love jaguars.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

brazilian cars

So, we've been here about a week, and I heard that unmistakable crunch of metal...
It was a car accident, of course.
I wasn't surprised though, because the driving style here is to go fast, brake late, and try to ignore the existence of pedestrians.  I'm a bit miffed about that last one, since I am a pedestrian here all the time.

But anyway - from my bird's eye view up on our balcony, I could actually see the aftermath of the accident.
Don't worry, nobody was hurt.  Everybody hopped out of their cars and worked together to roll the disabled vehicles off to the sides of the road.

It's a pretty awkward intersection, so it's not hard to see how this happened.
My favorite part was when some dude - who wasn't involved in the mishap - and who wasn't even wearing shoes - just hopped out into the middle of the road and started directing traffic.  He actually did a pretty good job.  After the police arrived, there were two officers directing traffic, and they weren't facing each they may have both told their oncoming lanes of traffic to go ahead at the same time.  Hmm. They sorted it out, though, after a minute.

Personally, I'd like to know how many flat tires needed to be fixed the next morning.  Hundreds of cars must have rolled through that pile of broken glass.

Across the street from the accident (and directly below the balcony) is this junkyard. 
If their cars are really messed up, they don't have far to go!

There are a TON of Volkswagen Beetles, though.  Actually, most of the cars on the road are pretty compact.  I've seen a few SUVs and minivans, but they certainly don't dominate the road here, like they do at home.

So that was my official concession to my New Jersey heritage - a quick chat about traffic.

If you drive, please be kind to pedestrians.  I get tired when I have to run across every sunbaked street.


Monday, September 9, 2013

nice hat, wolf-man

 Anthropomorphic Mail Art Project!

This was sent by the wonderfully fantabulous Ann-Marie. 
(Check out her blog full of good stuff and yummy artwork.)

I like the teeth, especially.  And, of course, the hat.

brazilian faces

Her eyes are captivatingly creepy.
And gigantic - this is a sketch I did of a floor-to-ceiling mural that we spotted in a Japanese restaurant.
It was our first night here. 
We ate a lot of sushi. :)

We went on a very long stroll on Saturday afternoon.  We had been warned that everything is closed on Saturday and Sunday, but we wanted to see what's around, anyway.  (Turns out there's a drug store open on every corner, practically - we got some sunscreen, which is very necessary here.)

I just thought this was a surprising bit of architecture, hanging out over an otherwise unassuming doorway.

In case you are a fan of the street art (as I am), you should know that it's alive and well, here in Sao Carlos.  This little lady helps me remember where to turn to get back to the hotel. Did I say little? Her face is a little over six feet high....or person-sized, to scale it for you.

Until next time...

Thursday, September 5, 2013

fancy brazilian plumbing

We have arrived safely in Sao Carlos, Brazil!  Hooray!
The first interesting thing I noticed about the mini apartment where we are staying is the plumbing.
I am a huge fan of indoor plumbing.
Luckily, there is hot water available for the shower, if only because there is a hot water heater taped to the top of the shower head.  Yes, those are electrical wires hanging out on top of a water source.
We're living on the edge, people.

As a side note, there's no hot water for washing dishes in the kitchen...which would bother me if we were staying here for more than a month.  As it is, though, we've only got two plates, so I'm pretty sure they won't get too dirty, since I must wash them pretty much immediately after use.

Don't worry, not all my posts about staying in Brazil will involve plumbing.
This is my "nesting" phase.  Pretty soon we'll be adventuring.