So, what else? Well, it’s been fairly relaxed in Florianópolis. The island, Santa Catarina, seems to have just the one big town, and a bunch of small villages spread around the coast and lagoons. I’m staying near one of the lagoons, Lagoa da Conceição. Beautiful hills all around. I spent most of Thursday hanging around the apartment, doing the last couple of bloggy updates, letting my brain catch up a little. It’s three-and-a-half months since I left Berlin, and just over two months since I flew from London to Mexico City to begin my trip, and I’m having a wave of catch-up. Lots of thinking about where I’ve been and where I’m going. Both geographically and mentally.
Music has become important. I’ve listened to a lot recently, after spending a huge amount of the trip ignoring my iPod’s music in favour of podcasts (should you be interested: BBC Radio 4’s Best of Today, ESPN Baseball Today, The Guardian Football Weekly, Mark Kermode and Simon Mayo’s Film Reviews, Real Time with Bill Maher, Stephen Fry’s Podgrams, WFMU’s Seven Second Delay, and The Word Magazine podcast).
And it’s mainly comfort music. Before I left Europe, I put lots of CDs on the iPod that I’d not listened to so much, or CDs borrowed from friends, and I’ve hardly touched them. Instead I’ve found myself going back to records that give me a nice, warm, fuzzy feeling. Maybe it’s because I have none of the home comforts I’m used to (I’m sleeping in my 17th different bed since I left Berlin), but, really, it’s no excuse for my Coldplay obsession right now. I can’t go a day without wanting to listen to them. Even “X&Y.;” When I’m listening, I still find myself thinking, “Gott in Himmel! These lyrics suck so much.” I don’t get why I’ve fallen for Coldplay, but I have, and it’s all fucking yellow. (How’s that for a cutting edge reference, eh kids?)
Yesterday, Renata and I went to go and look at the beaches in the north of the island, but a simple wrong turn took us onto the bridge off the island, so we kept going. We headed north for about an hour to a seaside place called Balneário Camboriú. A nice beach, a nice view of hills either side of the bay, with a bunch of modern hotels behind the beach to spoil it. The place was full – yes, full! – of Argentinian old folks. I cursed my luck that my first time walking along a crowded Brazilian beach wasn’t full of bikini-clad beauties; Renata was a tiny bit freaked that there were so few of her fellow Brazilians around. I took photos, but one feels a bit of a pervert taking photos on a beach, so most of them were done surreptitiously, holding the camera at my hip, which is probably even creepier.
Back on Santa Catarina, we stopped for some açaí. A tasty bowl of juicy pulp from the fruit of açaí palm, served mixed with strawberry and muesli. Good for you, apparently. (He says, lighting a cig as he types.)
Back at the apartment, I played some more with Nikolas. I’m not someone who has spent much time with children. My friend John in London has a two-year-old daughter, and she’s lovely. And since I’ve been here, playing with Nikolas, I’ve began to feel a tad broody. Not really used to that feeling. But when we were watching Woody Woodpecker (in Portuguese), and he scooched along the couch to fling his legs over my thigh and rest his head on my belly, I melted a little bit. This trip is doing strange things to my mind. And it’s probably about time that those strange things occurred. One can’t spend one’s life sitting at one’s desk at 3am watching the Yankees play the Blue Jays on a live Windows Media Player stream, can one?
Still, Coldplay!? C’mon, Craig, sort yourself out, son.