i just realized my last post was sunday, aug. 21st. that was 12 days ago. wow. since then a lot has happened – i prolonged my stay in são paulo (i had planned to go to rio on aug. 30th); participated in the explode!residency (where there was a history lesson on the art of voguing and a dance class i.e. paris is burning given by the legendary pony zion garcon; conducted an interview; read policy documents in portuguese (insert cheesing emoji here); observed a class and an education history research group meeting; went to the best samba in são paulo, BIXIGA (beecheega); moved from the santa cecilia neighborhood to barra (baha) funda; narcos season 2 was released but my partner and i agreed that we wouldn’t watch until we could watch it together; and brazilian’s first female president, dilma rousseff, was impeached. a lot of people were/are upset. some protested that day and are still very vocal about their disconcertedness – and things are still happening of course. that’s life.
for instance, i think i’m going to change where i’m staying again. the host is really cool but she has three cats and the hair situation is more than i can bear. i have one cat and she sheds a lot and i deal with it but three cats is another level. shout out to all you more than 1 cat owners out there. the good thing is that airbnb is super cheap, so the expense is not too bad, however, finding a place is another story. it took me a little while to find a place after three inquiries that i sent were declined. this is right after my original hosts, who were great by the way, told me a story about their black friend who was looking for an apartment and the owners would tell him “boy you can’t afford this” etc… the host said that she didn’t believe those kinds of stories until she was able to see it firsthand through the experiences of her friend. maybe my airbnb situation is not unrelated but did i mention that brazil has an interesting relationship with race? particularly blackness, as does the rest of the world. check out this post about blackness in america and this one about brazil. this of course is one of the main reasons that drew me here and it’s been an interesting ride thus far.
i feel like i’m settling in and starting to get somewhat of a rhythm but i also am trying not to get attached by recognizing that change is inevitable. traveling to another country by myself is more than enough to change one’s rhythm. perhaps that’s why i started this post with all of those happenings. some of those things were planned but most were not and no matter how the events manifested, i (and anyone else who was experiencing them) had to roll with it, adjust, or push back accordingly. so with that said, things are good. now i just have to figure out how i’m going to keep myself from watching narcos for like 6 months…yikes!