Independence Weekend in Caconde
Caconde Travel Blog› entry 13 of 73 › view all entries
thurs evening i headed out on a weekend trip through a Jewish community organization to Caconde, a small coffee-farming city in the interior of SP. The trip was off to a shaky start: i ate fast as hell to get to the bus stop on time, which i was only one of 2 people to do. waiting for the bus, the people who trickled in only got wierder and wierder until finally after about 5 people some normal folks started showing up. despite an alleged age cap of 25, i was easily the yougnest person on the trip, the oldest being 42. i bunked with 3 other guys who turned out to be pretty cool, even the the kid in the bunk next to me who snored like he was sucking his dying breaths through a straw.
friday we went white water rafting. i took the front of the raft, which was a challenge since the commands were in portuguese but i did allright.
saturday we went "cascading:" rappeling down a 45m waterfall. the guides set up a guideline over the fall for safety which was super lame, forcing you to fly over the fun parts. i've rappeled plenty for ropes training (i'm a volunteer firefighter at a technical rescue squadjust outside DC), so after one run i wasn't really down.
Caconde is out in the middle of nowhere. hella stars like WOAH (cali enough for ya?). thing is, it's the southern hemisphere, so i couldn't find anything i recognized besides the milky way which was GORGEOUS. a friend pointed out a few important constellations (scorpio, the southern cross), and i saw 3 shooting stars.
Being in the boonies, the locals don't stay in caconde if they can help it.
saturday night, on the other hand, was AWESOME. for some reason there were less children around, more kids our age. a friend of a friend who lived in town set us up with his neice, juliana, who was really cool and managed to find us rides to this party we were trying all night to get to (she was so cool, she arranged rides for her friends but didn't go herself until she found a way for us to get there. cool chick, huh?).
at the party i ran into a friend of ju's i'd met earlier that night, adriana, a 21yo recently graduated nurse who wanted to work on ambulances. i spent the night hanging out with her and her friends who were all really cool.
dri's cousin was super drunk and generally alotta fun. she kept encouraging us to kiss, which made me feel like i was in middle school, but whatever i didn't really mind. at one point the drunk cousin caught me in the face with her cigarette, nearly taking out my eye. i've still got a little burn on my cheek, maybe 50mm from my eye. close call folks, close call.
dri, her cousin, and the drunk fiancee gave me a ride back in their car that night.
by the way, crazy hospitality fomr the caconde folks. i got invited to stay at 2 people's houses and a wedding in may!
i spent the bus ride back to SP trading jokes with the guys on the trip. the jokes were sometimes really hard to understand/tell, but the effort taught me a bunch of new vocab, and the fact that i could appreciate brazilian humor built up my confidence in the language a little more.