Doug McLean World Tour 1999-2000
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Sent: Wednesday, April 12, 2000 11:59 AM
Subject: Mar.30-31, 2000: Recife IV

Current Date/Location: Wednesday, April 12, 2000...in Fortaleza.

Itinerary:
Hmmmm...was going to go to Jericoacoara...then to Canoa  Quebrada...hmmmm....but I have heard of this Easter Passion Play in a place called Nova Jersualem (New Jersalem)...hmmmm...and it is conveniently located near Recife...so I called my friend (remember...Dr. Luciana?) to see if it was OK if I returned to Recife for a little time and to attend this event...she seemed agreeable to it...so I may go...smile...

NOTE: It has come to my attention that some of the less informed (less fortunate) people in the world do not know what the heck a TWINKIE is!!!??? This came to my attention when a friend of mine in England (Anna...remember
the Pink Palace?) and I were corresponding and I referenced the life expectancy of a Twinkie...and she did not know what I was talking about...hmmm...can anyone guess that she is also a vegetarian??? (Hmmm...many of our CARVE members would probably like to hold a Roast-a-Pig Rally in her front yard...but alas...she is a good friend and I will not divulge her address...rather, only her ingnorance on this subject of utmost importance...the Twinkie!) OK...a Twinkie is a soft, yellow, sponge cake filled with creamy white sugary filling...and is considered by most people
to be quite a satisfying snack...it is also considered to be basically immune from decomposition and would be as good (or bad for you) to eat today as 200 years from now. The conversation with Anna was about spaceships
travelling at the speed of light...probably would kill humans...but if we manned a ship with cockroaches and twinkies (both of which are indestructable) we could test our speed of light theories...and the cockroaches could snack on the Twinkies while in deepspace...eh? For further information...please reference one of my favorite websites in the world...it was created by a bunch of Rice Owls (Rice being a University in Houston Texas...currently attended by my friend Kurt...who took physics...and therefore knows all...although I really shouldn't make fun of
him...he is a Nuclear Scientist...really...no kidding...) who performed extensive research with twinkies...check it out if you like...http://www.twinkiesproject.com/

Enjoy!
(sorry Anna...but because of your ignorance...now the world knows about Twinkies...and just think...Twinkies are a vegetarian friendly food...even if CARVE members aren't! Smile...maybe the world is just a little better
now, eh?)

JOURNAL -

March 30, 2000 (Thur):
Returned to Recife from Porto de Galinhas. I got dropped off...checked into the albergue...started walking to the shopping center to use the internet...and started cursing loudly. I realized I had left my beloved hat
(tan one I have worn on my entire trip) in van...cést la vie (but I was pretty pissed I had forgotten it...I hate things like that...but, it happens). Anyway...went to Shopping center to use internet...these folks know me by name now, and welcome me to a computer on sight of me...I feel like Norm in Cheers. Anyway, I was on the internet until Luciana showed up after her work...ahhhh...good to see her again!

We hung out for awhile, used the internet, had sushi, and returned to the albergue. She surprised me by giving me a new copy of Sophie´s World (which she knew I had lost in Natal...and was very sad about...and was probably
going to buy another copy anyway), Tour guide to Brazil, Portuguese language book, and a Map of Brazil. I was touched that she would want to give me these things, and had gone to the trouble to get them. Especially Sophie's
World and the Portuguese language book, I had been looking for one that good for awhile, with no luck...she had obviously searched far and wide for it.

Anyway, we were going to go out dancing...but first needed to go to Luciana´s place so she could change. On the way there, Luciana casually mentioned that the night before, she had 2 guys attempt to rob her with a knife! I was more than a little shocked...we had been together for the past several hours and she had not mentioned it. She had been in her car (returning home after buying my books the night before!) and 2 guys (with a knife) came up to her car (her window was open) at a stoplight and demanded money. She told me she talked them out of robbing her by telling them that she had no money and that it wouldn´t be worth their while to rob her...and they said OK and let her drive on when the light turned green! As I have mentioned, the Brazilians are a very friendly people who are unfortunately all to accustomed to crime...both the criminals and the victims. In the USA, the victim would probably freakout...and so would the robber...probably resulting in some sort of messy end to the situation. In Brazil, it is
still very dangerous, but everyone seems to often be rational about the whole thing, with robbers simply wanting money...and understanding that victims simply want to give it to them and get away...no harm, no foul.
Wierd...I think I was more freaked out about the whole thing than Luciana was...she was concerned only about fixing her airconditioner, so her window would be rolled up in the future. At times when I get comfortable
here...things like this jolt me back into the reality that it really is a Foreign country for me in various senses of the word.

Anyway...we did arrive at her mother´s apartment. And, as I have mentioned before, most folks of above average wealth here in Brazil live in exclusive apartments. Luciana lives with her mothe, sister, and brother. I met her
mother and sister during my visit...both are lovely. We had dinner, and then Luciana played the guitar for me...it was great! She is not ready to go on tour yet...but she plays well and I certainly enjoyed it...excuse the cliche and obviousness of the quote...but it truly was music to my ears.

We decided that since she had to work tomorrow, and it was already late...we would postpone dancing until Friday night. I was back at the hotel early (around Midnight).
 

March 31, 2000 (Fri):
Woke...I ate 2 frozen snickers bars for breakfast...ahhhh...a rare treat...I had bought them the day before and put them in the Albergue freezer...hmmm...but I had not expected to eat them both at one time...oh well. Went to the beach to improve my sunburn and to continue reading Gore Vidal´s Creation (about life in 5th century AD in Persia, Greece, India, and China). Here are some more of my favorite quotes...:

"'I dream of cows! I lust for cows!' Darius laughed. Scylax smiled, though he did not dare laugh. I was mystified. I had no idea what the reference to cows meant. Later, in India, I was to hear the phrase a thousand thousand times. Cows were the measure of wealth for those Aryan tribesmen who conquered Persia as they conquered Assyria and Greece and India. Although we no longer measure wealth in cows, the highly civilized Indian heirs of those long-dead cattle thieves still say 'I dream of cows' when they mean that they want wealth." (Truly a quote that a Texan would love!)

"If you cannot count properly, you had better not go to market - or to war." NOTE: I have noticed that sometimes people here in Brazil make ease counting mistakes...either they don't make the right calculation in their heads...or they make an error by depending on a calculator when they could easily figure the answer mentally. Just an observation of something I have noticed during my time here in Brazil...

"I dreamed of empire, as everyone does in youth."

"I have made it a point to expect the worst in life, and the fact that I am occasionally disappointed in my expectations is a source of dark solace."

"...learn as well as to teach or, to put it another way, one cannot teach without first knowing just what it is that others believe to be true."

"No man ever knows when he is happy; he can only know when he was happy."

Hmmm...this last quote, I disagree with...I am pretty sure I am happy being in Recife these days...smile.

That night, we went out that night with Luciana to a bar where her doctor friends would be. I ended up meeting lots of her co-workers...and had a very good time. Now I must say, Luciana is somewhat timid and shy sometimes...but I think that is just with me...because when she was with her co-workers that night at the bar, she was much more animated, talkative, and outspoken...I loved it. It is a pleasure to see people you like in different lights and settings...gives you a better picture of who they are...and as my picture of Luciana gets more and more complete as time passes, I am not bored with the how the picture is developing...rather, I become more and more fascinated with the details...like a painting that you look at once and see one thing...but the more you look, the more you find intricate details and subtle tones that make the subject more and more interesting and attractive...the more time I spend with Luciana the more I am drawn to her...smile...

Doug
Texas Nomad