…brasil at last…

Up until now, these last few entries were almost directly
from my journal in 2004 and 5.  Now, at this point, my journal
gets a little less continuous, a bit more sporatic.
I write here and there, when the moment moves me, but Now….
well, what can I say?  I am overwhelmed, in the moment, and
much too enveloped by the Now to take time out to write about it.

I remember arriving.  I remember going through customs…
I remember the rush of warm moist air, much like the first time
I arrived in Hawaii… like breathing steamy flowers.
I remember searching the crowd for The face …
And then, at last, I am out into the terminal, and as I scan the
crowd, I see him…. Dark glasses, serious face, and when we at last
acknowledge eachother, it is a Nod that I get… one of those
upsidedown nods, where the chin moves up, as in Hey… I See you.

At last we are there, face to face, and I move into his arms…
my head falls on his chest, and as I sigh, he says…. “I know….”.
Relief, joy, exhaustion, that ultimate ..oh god i’m here … all of it.

We have long looks at eachother, between casual chatter about
nothing, while we do all those obligatory things… get the baggage,
walk through mazes, find the car…

I’m sure we talked, but of what… who can recall.
What were my first impressions?  He looked ragged, tired, but still
looked like him, and I was relieved to see his face, though scared,
was still Him, that wonderful intensity and handsome grace still
He said he hadn’t slept much, and I could see he was nervous,
and even parking had been stressful.  He was as nervous as I was.

At last we are on the highway, and I get my first glimpses of Rio.
This is a large island in the Guanabara Bay, and I am fascinated.
Actually, as we were banking in to circle and land at Jobim
I remember taking in that view, at a low altitude, of that mythical
city, now real, but still not…. my heart pounded.
The International Airport, Aeroporto, is on this large island, the
largest in that Huge Bay, and Ilya do Governador was populated
long ago, as a suburb of Rio.
To venture to Downtown Rio, there was an old shuttle, in the
form of a Ferry, and it didn’t take cars.
Later they built a highway, but the ferry was so picturesque.

But that was saved for later… he only lived on the other side
of the island, and the tangle of little streets and clusters of
old houses, as we took the narrow road that circled the island…
my eyes just couldn’t take it all in.

This is Real, I kept on saying in my head…this is really happening…
My head could not keep up with reality… it was like there were
hiccups in the time warp web, and I struggled to keep hold.

Now we’re home to his house, this strange old place, the place
of his birth, a multi layered sort of grandiose manor with columns
and stone walks, with an aura of dark sadness and unkempt order,
like some aging Hollywood actress, far past her prime, yet doing
her best to keep up the face of elegance and regal charm.
It was set up high from the sidewalk, with wrought iron fences
and gates, locks and uneven stairs…
We unload my suitcases, go up and collapse into his tiny
basement abode.

I don’t remember much until it was time to change.  I had been in
my same clothes for maybe 18 hours, and moved into the next tiny
room, a hallway actually,  to find something cool and homey, from
the place he had offered me for my things…. I saw his Legion
jacket, next to his Futebol (foochibole)  jersey in black and white.

He followed me.  And as I undressed, he watched with eyes wide
and brilliant.  He never took his eyes off of me, his stare washing
over me like sweeping lazers.
I felt more naked than I actually was, which was pretty darned naked.

He surveyed every inch, taking in the reality, as the covers peeled
away…. which wasn’t too bad actually….
My daughter had exclaimed that I had an incredible body for
my age (oh thank you!), and my son had mentioned that I easily
could be 47, instead of my 60-something in earth years.
That helped, but still…

I was glad I’d worked out and exercised, tanned and dieted.
Come on!  this man lived in the city of some of the most gorgeous
women you’ve ever seen…. and when he’d last seen me,
I had definitely been in my prime.

I think we ate, I’m sure we drank, and he broke into the list of
things he’d been missing.  Scotch was shared, my space was allotted,
I bet we bit into one of those chocolates, and shared the
pungent green center.
And from there, well what would You do at this point?
We were like polarized magnets, unable to be apart long enough
to barely breath.

I remember his skin, that beautiful smooth brown tropical skin…
I remember his calling me Babe from the first day…

It was February…. our equivalent of August in the North….

It was a moist, humid, brilliant tropical air, soft breezes with palms
and flowers outside, gatherings of birds rushing by our windows,
and we had eachother.
At last, we had and held eachother.