Wednesday, 3 August 2011

It's been a month already!

Well I have been here for a month now.  What have I achieved or learned so far?
-          I realised that the bikini I bought in England is way too conservative for Rio, so I went to get  an “itsi-bitsi” bikini that blends more with the locals! And NO! It’s not a thong! I’ll have some way to go before I get there!
-          We now go to the beach with our own folding chairs and pareos (under no circumstance should you use a towel in the beach!)
-          If you’re a man you should wear a speedo, unless you want to stand out (only tourists would wear bermudas – or surfers!)
-          Coco juice is great but don’t forget, once you drink all, to ask the girl with the machete to cut the coconut open so you can eat the flesh!
-          If you expect delivery at home of some piece of furniture on Tuesday at 3pm you will be
-          lucky to get it the next day at 11 am, without warnings! Very much like the UK then!
-          The cycling/running lane along the beach is not for morons to stand in and chat while  getting off tourist buses, and block the path! Get the hell out of my way!

After 4 weeks here I have met many expats through my language school.  Being a foreigner is easy for me, after all I was already “abroad” when I lived in the UK. However I have come to realise the differences.
When I met Alistair in Paris in 95, he could use my network of friends from university to get an instant social circle. When we moved to London in 97 I fell back on his circle of friends and colleagues in town for our social life, to start with.
However, here, we are both foreigners and we don’t know anyone. It can be lonely, especially for me as I do not work.
SO far we have met many fellow expats, via my language school. Most of them however are like &$&Y%$ year olds ( some are in their early – mid 20s!). Makes me feel like a granny!
Anyhow, it will be nice to eventually get to know people more of our own age range and with shared interests!  I don't wnat to stick exclusively to "expat circles"! I hope that once we can buy a couple of motorcycles we could join a local motorcycle club and meet fellow bikers!  So far we only have been visiting bike dealers in Botafogo.
There is even a BMW dealer now! Alistair went there to investigate! The F800GS is “only” 65,000 reais (= 26,000GBP or a measly 43,000USD!). But hey! They may reduce the price as it is going to be assembled in Brazil soon! It will be only a very affordable ....  45,000 reais soon (= GBP18k or USD 30k). I have used 2.5 and 1.5 respectively for GBP and USD vs Reais.  
Anyone who knows my history with BMW (I had the privilege ride 23,000 miles around south America on an F650GS for a year!) will understand why I will stick to Japanese! “What part of “Honda” don’t you understand”?
I will make my point with this:
You may as well cut the middle man and get a pile of rust instead! J
That’s all for now folks!

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