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Thursday, July 29, 2010

In Memory of Barry

DSC09055 Blogger
 Barry said... “That was a surprisingly different powerful post, GingerV.  Sometimes a few carefully crafted words are better than a thousand pictures.”
What a complement.  Barry made this comment on my FSO post ‘Incongruous’ and I can remember the pride I felt that he would like how I wrote.  I like hearing from all of the FSO gang but to receive a comment from Barry was special, made my day.  I think of him as the master
  He used metaphor as a way of expressing his feelings, his fears, his joys as he made his way through life’s adventures. 
On July 29, 2009 soon after the cancer diagnosis, in his post ‘dreams of Lindsay’ , using metaphor, he talked of his fear of the future, fear of the pain and sickness he might have in his future, of the comfort he felt at home in front of the fire with Linda and his memories.  If we took the time to read carefully we knew exactly what he felt.  Barry wrote,
Lightning flashes and rain begins to thunder against the roof. Lindsay comes scampering out of the dark of the back office, slows to a halt at the reassuring sight of Barry and Linda in the living room, and then walks at a more dignified pace over to the fireplace.
What, me scared by a little lightning, she seems to say.
At the fireplace she begins to walk in circles, scratching periodically at the carpet. Round and round she goes scratching the carpet into a more comfortable nest, before she flops to the floor with a window rattling thump.
….A distant thunder roars and rumbles across the sky and the beat of the rain increases.
Lindsay closes her eyes and is asleep within seconds.
Barry watches her with amazement. She looks so comfortable. By now she has recognized an unfortunate change in her daily routine. No longer does Barry take her for runs, or even walks around the block. He is wrestling with a nauseating dizziness that has confined him to his chair and bed. A world swirling vertigo that shows no sign of let up or improvement.
So Lindsay has stopped reminding him that the time for her walk is overdue. She isn't happy about it, but she has come to accept it.
In her sleep, Lindsay has rolled over on her side and her legs and nose have begun to twitch. Barry notices her eyes moving rapidly back and forth. Lindsay is deep in a dream.
No longer before the fireplace, Lindsay runs the pathways of the meadow at the top of the Scarborough Bluffs. Everywhere she is enticed by fragrant scents that lead her off the path, deep into the bushes and tall grasses. Here the sun is always shining and a gentle winds ruffles the hair on her head and long floppy ears. She recalls her encounter with the coyote and the naked man, the grieving Hindi family and the fashion models. Her heart beats faster at the memories of running the beach at the bottom of the bluffs and watching a huge flock of seagulls take to the sky as she runs into the midst.
And then the telephone rings and Linda answers it. Lindsay reawakens to her place before the fire and the sound of the storm outside. She yawns and sighs and looks over at Barry, reading quietly in his chair.
Then closes her eyes once again and returns to sleep…..
Posted by Barry at 10:07 AM                   
 Managing to hold onto his humor, not giving in to whining about his losses, being strong in the face of great adversity, being strong for us his blog pals even as his body weakened, this is how I will remember Barry and will continue to feel honored that I was allowed to know him these last two, too brief years. 

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Sunday Afternoon Adventure

     For so many of our first years here we seem to never do anything.  This last year seems to have been filled with new adventures every time we spend the weekend in Rio.  There are really a lot of cultural events taking place every weekend. 
This last week I received a notice from the American Society about a children’s concert presented at the Igreja da Candelária in downtown Rio.  Reading the program to the left for you – This is the 16th season – Melody 2010 – festival of children’s choirs.  This week was the Colburn Children’s Choir  from the United States and the Children’s Choir of UFRJ (the federal university of Rio de Janeiro)
Now you want the good or the bad first?

Lets do the bad first and get it out of the way.  1. We took the Metro from Ipanema to the  Uruguaiana station, that is one station to the west of downtown.  The train was very full but we got on at the start of the ride and managed to have seats.  From the subway station we had to walk a short 3 blocks to the church.  The street was filthy, and the smell was atrocious – with homeless sleeping up against the buildings - on the window ledges, the recessed doorways - the downtown and the bathrooms locked up tight, you can imagine the smell I am talking about. 
2. We arrive about 5 minutes before the start time and the first half, up front was completely full.  When the children were singing the sound was not very good.  The church is very big, very high ceilings – for this type of concert the acoustics were not very good. 
3. scan0002 The Good!.  The church is truly beautiful inside.  A prime example of an 18th century Portuguese church.  The church is worth every minute of the trip downtown.  We will go back for the concert on the 15th of August.  We will take a taxi, arrive at the front of the church, avoid the street we had walked up, get there early to sit in the front and really enjoy the music.  Remember you can double click to enlarge the programs and read the detail. 
And click on view full album below to see inside the church.

Friday, July 23, 2010

My Town FSO – feet and shoes

Practically from birth girls love their shoes. 
SAM_0990 SAM_0984 The Barra another festival (21) Whether it be for comfort
, BYE! (6) 
to show off their legs,
to dance the night away
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whatever the occasion
lunch at ITAHY (7)Shoes make the girl
All fashion sense aside – for men shoes are just something you put on your feet while working, exercising or waiting…..
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Unless he is famous then he enjoys having you stand at his feet – to gaze upward in Awe.
 The Christ the train and the view (27)

Friday, July 16, 2010

FSO - Transitions

Sometimes the change of seasons in Brasil is not obvious.  We slide easily from Winter to Spring into Summer, sliding past Fall and back into Winter.  There is not much variation in temperatures, only the changes in the amount of rainfall marks the seasons here.  And with the rain or dry, follows the fog and the bright sunlight and these changes are what gives us our seasons. SAM_0913 SAM_0914
This year we had a very early in the fall,  very cool temperatures – to me it seemed different how early on in June it felt cold.  Don’t laugh at me because 10c - 13c or 50f –55f does feel cold up here in fog.  
The trees bloom in different colors at different time of year, and if you can keep track of the season it is possible to remember that the purple is spring, the orange flower is Summer, the bright pink is winter.  DSC_0036
This year we actually had fall colors.  I first saw them from the bus window coming from Rio – these colors were so unusual that once in Friburgo I went in search of the tree with either the bright yellow flowers or leaves.  This year’s weather has been so confused that the faux Cherries were in full bloom in mid June instead of early July.   Today it is sunny and warm – almost 20c (68) perfect weather for lunch on the veranda.  It feels like we are in the transition zone between winter and spring and not even the weather knows what will happen next.
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Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Things to do in Rio

SAM_0937metro-map-rio Every time Camillo and I have come from the GIG (the international airport) I ask, “what is  that building?”  and Camillo answers, “the national museum, we need to visit it.”  and I say, When?”  We have been making that trip from the airport at least twice a year for upward of 18 years and the conversation has always been the same. 
This last weekend as a bribe to get me into Rio, Camillo promised me a cultural event and as promised, on Saturday we took the metro to the Cinelándia station just east of central Rio, then a taxi the short distance to the Museu Histórico Nacional.   
Brazil's Museum of History.  
The museum is housed in a military building dating back to 1762 and has been meticulously restored and maintained.   There is a large courtyard on the ground floor that I will need to go back and explore. 
In the courtyard there is a wall of leaded arched windows and a ceramic tile fountain that were being cleaned and was closed to the public, and the courtyard has old iron cannons and all this DSC_4644area needs to be photographed. 
Also on the ground floor was a large area being prepared for a wedding; filled with Chrystal chandeliers and large DSC_4678pots of white roses and lilies.  The flowers filling the front entrance, all with the rich smell of fresh cut flowers is enough to start off your with the right attitude. 
In what I suspect was the ground floor stables are two large areas filled with carriages.  Each carriage seemed in pristine condition, each one individual with wood carved doors, leather seats – a real glimpse into the glories of Brasil in the 1800s.
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   Up on the second floor was a well laid out area that contained a select collection of archeological artifacts, more modern busts of the nobility that came from Portugal and a few graphs that helped put the history into perspective the development of man in Brasil with the rest of the world. 
I found it all easy to follow (was in Portuguese and English) and very interesting.  An excellent way to spend a Saturday afternoon in Rio. DSC_4565DSC_4577 DSC_4592  














Thursday, July 01, 2010

MTFSO-Urban Macro

As I often do when in a blank area – not knowing what to do with the week’s FSO topic, I Google it.  Somewhere within all the thousands pages that come from a Google search is usually a word or a phrase that sparks my interest and clarifies the topic for me.  First a definition of Macro photography – “…The classical definition is that the image projected is close to the same size as the subject….” and a search of ‘URBAN MACRO’ rewarded me with a complete group of photos on flickr.com.  The clincher for me was visiting Pauline’s site – now I had the idea and went hunting in my archives for photos that might work. 
All of these photos are from the Nova Friburgo area.
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DSC08293  DSC08298
Ever seen the flower of a Banana Tree?  Not Urban but forest – but very much a part of the surrounding area where banana trees (well more of a bush) grown wild in the forest.