Steve's Newsletter 5 from Brazil

Monday 8th May

I start writing this latest newsletter on the first anniversary, 8th May 06, of my move to Brazil. However due to a computer problem (some idiot forgot to save 1st draft), I doubt I'll finish writing it on this day.

February and March were quiet months with very little news to write about apart from some limited success on the work front.

In late February I replied to an advert in a local paper from a local language school called Greenwich looking for people to teach English to businessmen. After a written test, interview and two half days of training I was feeling reasonably confident that I would be working soon. However, there was no real developments until the beginning of April when I was asked to teach one of their more advanced groups of teenagers. These lessons are at a school a few kilometres away twice a week. In the interim I was contacted by a man who wanted some English classes specifically from a native English English speaker! I have now been teaching him for a couple of months with a view to helping him pass an IELTS exam required for entry to British universities. He is planning on applying to study for a PhD at a UK university next year .

Last month also saw the completion of the new bookcase/cupboards in Eneida's study. The photos below show my design and visualisation as compared to the real thing. We are both very pleased with the way the unit looks and with the extra storage space it provide which was desperately needed.

Computer render

Reality

As you may know Brazil has one of the largest numbers of holidays of any country. In April/May we had three long weekends in a row the first being for Easter (although Good Friday is the only weekday we have off). Good Friday was followed the following week with Tiradentes Day (Tiradentes is a national hero who fought for independence from Portugal) and finally the following weekend was May Day/Labour day.

As Eneida had the whole week before Easter off from work (the Catholic university she works at has more and longer holidays than other places) we decided to go away for the week to the beach. To make the most of what remained of the summer, we took the chance to go to a resort in the state of Rio de Janeiro called Arraial do Cabo.

Arraial do Cabo is on the peninsula that marks the point where the coast of Brazil changes from running roughly east/west to running more in a south-west/northeasterly direction and is about 170km east of the city of Rio itself. It is also the self-proclaimed centre of diving in Brazil although most people I've talked to would say that Fernando de Noronya, an island several hundred kilometres off the north east coast in the Atlantic, has the best diving. At some point in the future Eneida and I plan to visit it .

By now you have probably guessed that our holiday did involve diving. Whilst on the trip I took the chance to take a few dives whilst Eneida was taking her PADI Open Water course. Now that she is qualified, we will be able to dive together on future trips.

Finally also success on the document front. After 169 days (not that I was counting) I finally received my RNE. The RNE is the identity card the foreigners are required to carry in Brazil. It is also the document that Mir required to get virtually all the other documents so its arrival was very welcome. Roughly 3 weeks after receiving it, I now have the other document needed such as carteira do trabalho (a sort of work log book that employers should complete) and my Minas Gerais driving license. To be honest I still don't have the license, but have been told it will be here no later than Friday (12/4). I hope this timescale is more accurate than RNE one was. Finally if you are interested in the process of getting all my documents read this page.

That's all our news for now. As to our future plans or trips, currently we have nothing arranged. In July, whilst we are both on holiday from our respective teaching commitments, we are considering a trip to Bonito. More details to follow in the next newsletter no doubt... Please email or call us on Skype.

Abraços

Steve e Eneida



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