Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Mall Bait

I, for one, never have to be lured into a mall. I go of my own free will and choice. One thing we have noticed down here, however, is that there is always something enticing people to go to the mall. Especially for the kids.
We call it "mall bait".

It can be as simple as driving little carros around and terrifying the old people.

Or...something a bit more elaborate. 
There is always something to see, do, and/or pay for.

Dragons are definitely appealing. 

Holidays are a big deal - such as this one at Christmas. It featured animated storybook characters and a merry-go-round.

Another mall reconstructed a pirate ship for the kiddos.

Yet another featured miniature golf (for a price, of course).

And then there was the ice skating rink this winter.

And let's not forget the puppet show - a must do for sure.

The most recent "bait" was a Brazilian exhibit teaching about the five regions of the country and their contribution to the the world. These five regions are: North, Northeast, Center-West, Southeast, and South.

Translation: It is the largest country in Latin America, being the fifth largest in the world in territorial area. It is a great natural patrimony (endowment) of the planet since it possesses a great variety of natural habitats like the Amazon forest, the Atlantic forest, the Cerrado (Savanna wetland area), the Caastinga (desert area), the forest of Aruacarias (the Paraná pine, Brazilian pine or candelabra tree), rivers and seas, reflecting in an immense number of vegetation and animal species. 
(Curitiba is in the purple region labeled PR for the state of Paraná.)

 This is our region: 
"It is the coldest part of Brazil. It has an extensive area of natural pastures, favoring the development of livestock. Mate (maw-tay) grass is also grown here with which chimaarrão is prepared. In the coastal areas we can find mangroves (shrubs or small trees that grow in the swamps along the coast) and restingas (tropical and subtropicala broadleaf forests)."
This area also grows a lot of fruits - grapes being very plentiful.

I could go on and on, but I think you get the idea. 

This exhibit is now gone and we await the next attraction.
With so many malls we are never at a loss for things to see, do and/or pay for. 
(This is actually the only thing Don is willing to go to the malls for, so you can see that the bait is truly working!)

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Circo Imperial da China

This week the Imperial Circus of China came to town.
No clowns, elephants, or bearded ladies here.
This circus consisted of acrobats, dancers and contortionists from China.

After getting our popcorn and finding our seats, we were ready for the show to begin!

The Imperial Circus of China is considered one of the best circuses in the world and is currently touring all the major cities in Brazil.

Don't try this at home!

The Chinese have been doing this for over 2,000 years. Maybe that's why they are so good at it. 


The artists in this show are true pop stars in Asia!

Intense training can begin as early as age 6 and classes can last up to ten years in the Ministry of Culture.

Members of the Imperial Circus of China dedicate their lives to performance.

The company is made up of 50 artists, including skilled acrobats, dancers and contortionists.

This tour celebrates the 25th anniversary of the circus company.

Generally, retirement comes at the age of 40.

I, for one, can certainly see why!!

I must say that a good time was had by all - and we didn't even miss the clowns, elephants, or bearded ladies!

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Jots & Tittles

I guess you could say that this blog post is just a bunch of "small and miniscule" things which haven't been posted yet, but may be of interest to somebody out there.
Anyway, here ya go...

Last Sunday was Father's Day (Dia dos Pais) in Brazil - the second Sunday of August. Just like in the States, it isn't that big of a deal. Take a look at that treat!! Ha. 
Every ward needs a good choir, don't cha know. 
While we're talking church, Don and Wayne have taught the Gospel Doctrine class a couple of times. I'm sure they did a fine job, but since it was in Portuguese it was a little hard for me to tell.

Sylvana and Jefferson Rasaro invited us over to their house Sunday. He is the 1st Counselor in the ward and she is the stake Relief Society President. They both work with us in the temple, as well.

While we're talking food, yesterday the temple presidency cooked up a wonderful feijoada lunch for the staff, security, and missionary couples. 
 (We all helped put it together.)
(The end result was enjoyed by all!)

One of the things I love about Brazil is that there are these popcorn stands everywhere. I do love good pipoca. 

While we're still talking food, Madero Burger and Grill advertises that they make the "best burger in the world". These restaurants are found everywhere in the state of Paraná. We just had to see for ourselves. 
We each gave them a 2-thumbs-up. They may not be the best in the world, but they are they sure are the best we have found in Curitiba! - so far. 
And the desserts are really good, too.

We have Family Home Evening once a month at the apartments. The young missionaries in our ward and their investigators are always invited to join us. This was last night's group.

The only other thing I can think to add this week is about my trip to the dentist. As I was eating a frozen cookie Sunday afternoon, I chomped down on something exceedingly hard and found it to be a piece of tooth. Oh, no! What to do? Up comes the tender mercy - Presidente Oliviero called his dentist and they got me in yesterday afternoon and she fixed the whole thing in just one visit. Now it's as good as new!
(We had to wear footies. Ya gotta keep that white tile pristine and germ free. Presidente had to fill out the registration form for me. Did I mention how much we love our president?)

Oh, one last thing - 
Who knew that Brazilians really do eat Brazil Nuts!?
Yep, they do. And they even like them!

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Paranaguá and Mata Atlântica

This week's adventure took us to Paranaguá.
Paranguá is the sea link for Curitiba and is one of the largest ports of Brazil. Founded in 1648, it is also Paraná's oldest city. 
We, however, did not go to see the port. 

Our purpose was to present another Couple's Fireside with President and Sister Oliveira.
You can see how anxious Dianne is - she's carrying her talk in her hand! I kept mine folded up in my purse. The big picture is of the stake leaders. The missionaries are Elders Garlick and Arscott (both from Utah). I actually know Elder Arscott's mom and it was fun to reconnect with her again this week. Such a small world in Mormonland!

These Brazilians are regular night owls, so after the fireside and socializing, we were invited over to the home of the family of Antonio Vicente Viana. There we had a wonderful fish dinner (even though by this time it was 11:00 pm).
The stake president is in the red tie - Cristiano Bukarewicz. 

Twenty kilometers inland finds you in the Atlantic Forest (Mata Atlântica). Arriving at 1:00 am, we spent the night at the Mata Atlântica Park Hotel.

We spent Monday exploring the area. 

We hiked to a waterfall.
 Wayne found a pool of flies which kept him entertained for a long time.

The fauna is lush in the rain forest, to say the least. 
The flora is beautiful.

We took advantage of the hotel's horses.

...and checked out their farm.

We hiked all the way up to the old church on the hill.

...and visited the old micro brewery where the sugar cane from the farm was once made into beer.

We were fed very well!! And a lot of the food was grown right in the hotel's backyard.

After we did about all we could do there, we drove home by way of the beach in Matinhos.

There will be other days to visit the port of Paranaguá. 
And certainly other days to visit some more beaches.
Brazil has over 7,000 miles of coastline, ya know!