One really amusing aspect of this visit with V was to
watch the two of them romp and kibbitz.
They were terribly in love with the reflection of each in
the other, and I was truly content to be amused by the show,
and to see this fierce warrior as a tender father was
a beautiful gift.
The photos I share here are but a fraction of the film I spent
on their interactions. She was Made for the camera, and
if you add watching Lots of Novellas (soap operas) on TV,
Plus…if you’ve ever seen the Carnaval Queens of Rio, you
might consider the images that children there see every day.
Glamorous, gorgeous, and very comfortable in their bodies
…well, I guess you have the makings of a star….
She and I spent the first couple days sharing and comparing
words. I have pages in my journal of her numbers and letters,
and lots of things in Portuguese and English.
We had fun, and laughed some. We would point to things, and
then we would teach eachother the language we each knew.
She spoke no English, which surprised me actually. Alcir was
so conversant, but then again, the mother didn’t speak English.
While I was there, he would only speak English, as he was
excited to be practicing it again.
I knew some Portuguese, but couldn’t carry on conversations.
In particular we worked on pronunciation, for each language
has sounds that are not used in the other.
It was funny on both sides, and we laughed at eachother’s
attempts and tongue twisters.
It was lovely sitting out on the steps in the sunshine and breezes,
and making our little baby steps towards eachother.
She loved watching me paint with my watercolors, and
tried some herself.
But Alcir had his warnings for me….
“Watch out,” he shared. “She’ll be nice at first…”
We took a little drive, after much coaxing by both of us girls,
up to Corcovado, the rolling mountain top where sits
the Concrete Christ, way above the downtown city of Rio.
The enormity just doesn’t get to you til you stand at the feet
of that amazing statue.
The day was overcast, and his head was in the clouds.
They were also in the midst of repairs, likely sort of like the
San Fran Bridge, where it just keeps going on in one manner
or another, constantly, and the drapery and fencing just
added to the surreal scene.
During this visit with V, I came down with a terrible
fever, and although I was frightened, it turned out to be a
really bad bladder and kidney infection.
I remember his large warm hand on my forehead, checking
me often, as in dilerium, I was carried inside and tended to.
Chills came and went, deep shivering and heavy sweats,
and the comforting energy he gave me with his concern
stayed with me.
Beyond that, the only positive thing was the loss of five
pounds, which actually were helpful in adjusting to the
humid summer heat.
I think it was 9 or 10 days that she stayed, and during that time
there would be no intimacy between the two of us.
We had only had four days alone, our honeymoon time.
She began getting dramatic. Very dramatic.
She would go visit Aunt Maria, eat sugary things, and
watch the Novellas.
Her father wouldn’t let her watch them here.
Then, when she would walk in and find us close together,
holding hands or cuddling, she would sigh loudly,
turn and stomp away.
One day the child Raged all day.
Every moment was consumed by her, nothing was enough.
Pai! Pai! Pai….!
Once she did her stomp away to Maria’s, and Alcir followed.
When he returned he was both angry and laughing.
“Oh Good Lord!” …he shook his head.
“She has thrown herself on the bed, and she is
pounding the mattress with her fists screaming…
…..WHY ..WHY … WHY….!”
journal continues… it’s Sunday
“She is doing a little better in general, doing her best to accept
something she can’t compete with…. or kill……….
….V goes home Tues or Wed. “