This morning I listened to a CD that a Brazilian friend of mine gave me. It's Antonio Brasileiro by Antonio Carlos Jobim, light and frothy Bossa Nova and Samba.
Só danço samba, vai, vai, vai, vai, vai
Looking at the sleeve notes with a cheesy picture of Ipanema beach looking up to Dois Irmãos brings back lots of memories of the time I was in Rio de Janeiro, a beautiful and vibrant place.

Of course there is violence bred from poverty and terrible pollution there too. I can remember being stuck in one of the huge tunnels that cut through the hills and inhaling this queasy alcoholic smell (the cars are fuelled by alcohol). I also remember being pretty frightened one time when I was downtown at night after listening to Mozart performed by a German choir. On the bus going back we were stopped at a road-block and these guys who looked like bandits came onto the bus. They had cartridge belts draped over their shoulders and they looked like they were dying to shoot someone. Anyhow, it turns out they were police! Like police everywhere they seemed to be racists and they searched this big black guy who was sitting next to me on the bus.

I had a lot of fun in Rio too, walking along the beaches at Ipanema and Copacabana at night, buying this fantastic bread from the local bakery with my halting Portuguese. Imagine a city that has a rain forest in its centre. Heh! I want to go back.

Yesterday, Tomorrow