Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Salvador da Bahia

We made it to Salvador at the beginning of a very wet weekend, which nearly managed to turn all the brightly coloured houses of the Pelourinho into a boring grey. Mmmm, flip flops and wet cobblestones; Slip slops.
From Salvador

The Pelourinho sits on a hill over looking what's known as Ciudad Baixa (lower city) and the bay upon whose borders Salvador lies. It's super cultural up here, which also means it's super touristy and you get hustled to buy stuff or give out money wherever you go. On the upside there is music and dancing all day long and we are always stumbling upon a group of kids bashing out rhythms on the streets outside their school.
From Salvador

We got taken in by a scam last night when a street kid came and asked Leah for some money. We've read that it's best not to give out money since more often than not they don't use it to buy food but instead for drugs, or even worse for someone elses drugs. So instead we offered to buy him some food and he lead us off to some cafe. We ordered him a burger and a drink, which we paid for upfront and then we waited while they went about making it. When the kid realised we wanted to stay and wait with him while he ate he threw a tantrum and began huffing about outside the cafe, and when asked why he didn't want to eat with us he said he wanted to take the food home. Meanwhile we still waited for them to make his burger. I realised that the guy in the cafe was in on this scam and actually they expected us to go before we received his food, at which point no doubt they would have split the money we had handed over and he would have been off to hustle someone else for money. When he realised we weren't going anywhere he reluctantly took the burger and drink and then left in a huff. But when we left after him he was waiting round the corner and promptly ran back around into the cafe and we overheard him arguing with the owner, no doubt expressing his disappointment about having food rather than cash. What to do?

Tomorrow we're splitting North again to Maceio and in the next two weeks we've to make it right up to the most Eastern shores of Brasil before we turn the corner and fly West toward the jungle. Incredible to think that we just past the four month marker on this trip! A little under a month left in Brasil now and then we shall be in Venezuela.

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