Latest on things

The rain here has dried up completely, and it’s getting depressingly hot. The average temperature is something like 35, but that’s in the shade of course – more than two or three minutes in the sun and you feel like you’ve just run the Mull of Kintyre half marathon in an Aran sweater and woolly tights. It’s so hot we can’t even use the pool during the day (don’t worry, it’s still very pleasant at dawn and dusk).

The river levels continue to go down, and this is now quite noticeable around the harbour areas of the city. At this rate, I’ll be lucky to get my new boat in the river at all, never mind thinking about the flutuante. For the annoraks amongst me, the level is down to 26.89m, receding now at the rate of 6 – 7 cm per day.

We’ve had the painters and decorators in and they’ve made a thoroughly good job of the bedroom and are now working on the rest of the house. We also currently have someone in installing aircon in the bedroom (which they should finish tomorrow, thankfully). The electrician’s coming tomorrow too, to try to make some sense of the previous owner’s DIY circuits and make things safe and sound for us, and the telephone company is threatening to install our phone sometime soon (still).

We had our first trip out on the river at the weekend, in our friends’ boat the Sammy III, which is a huge, diesel-powered (18m?) monster that I find far too intimidating – it looks like it should be spear-heading the invasion of Cuba or something. Anyway, it was wonderful to be out on the Rio Negro (actually the Rio Taruma), and we had a fish lunch at the

Flutuante Peixe Boi (which I think the translation of is ‘manatee’, although the literal translation is Fish-cow, which is much less elegant don’t you think?). When I was asked by one of the smug staff whether we were all English, I was pleased to say that I was Irish, my wife was Brazilian, my friend Italian and his wife Belgian. I think he was suitably dumbstruck by this veritable galaxy of bi- and multi-lingual foreigners. Jolly good thing too, if you ask me. Last night we managed to add a French and a German woman to the happy throng, in a local restaurant. It all sounds great, although frankly with my Portuguese being the worst amongst all of them, I feel pretty dumbstruck myself most of the time. Never mind.

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2 Responses to Latest on things

  1. tcm says:

    Ha ha. Quite right Betty.

    Would “thar cionn” suit better…?


  2. Anonymous says:


    ‘Jolly good’? – you obviously lived too long in England. No self-respecting Irish man would say that! No wonder the poor barman was confused.



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