Hi and a good evening:

This week it’s a bit of a departure from Saturday morning ramblings. Problem is that I’ll be flying out of here – Sao Paulo – at 11:00 local time this evening. This will get me into Atlanta at 6:45 am. The current plan is for me to arrive and go through customs and security, then promptly head for the departure gate and my flight to El Salvador. This is all so that I can have dinner with a customer at his home tomorrow night. Does this express love for my customer or what? Actually it is an honor since this is the first time the family is entertaining after the death of my host’s father about six weeks ago.

Talking about dinner. Last night’s was more than eventful. Realize that I feel that I blew 2 years of steady diet watching in one fell swoop. Start off with Brazilian raw oysters on the half shell, complete with fresh limejuice, horseradish and a little picante red sauce and some local wine. These were, by popular acclaim, the very best anyone of us had tasted. The main course was a chunk of Sea Bass that would put any filet to shame, surrounded by a small portion of very light ravioli stuffed with Buffalo cheese and grated pheasant. Eventually at 12:30 this morning, desert consisted of the very dark Brazilian espresso coffee and 5 flawless grapes pickled in Cognac complete with a cigar outside on the patio. Sorry, but I was still drooling when the hotel front desk gave me my 6:15 wake-up call this morning.

The other thing that was quite noticeable, after one in our group pointed it out, was how many gray-haired ‘fathers’ were having a cozy dinner with their twenty-something year old ‘daughters’ – these ‘special moments’ tables consisted of just couples to parties of 6. Looking about it had to be 17 or so such groups out of the 28 to 30 tables in the place. It’s amazing what you see in a city area consisting of about 20 million people.

Enroute to one of my appointments I passed a field about the size of 4 football fields. Parked tightly together were a hundred plus huge and deteriorating floats from last week’s Carnival. Bits of crepe paper and glitter could still be seen on the remaining structures. One moment these were spectacular floats, cheered by crowds of awestruck kids, and surrounded by strutting beauties and salsa bands then this as their end. The light rain made the whole spectacle in this field appear lost, forlorn and utterly discarded.

Marcia tells me all is well on the home front. Adrianne finished her winter semester and is gearing up for her Habitat for Humanity work in Costa Rica during the Spring break. Now it’s off to walk about a bit and then cab for Garroulhos airport and Delta’s squeezebox-like accomodations.

Have a great week,



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