I sat with my grandmother yesterday to write in English, now I am trapped between these worlds. The world where I come from where some people do not speak English, and the millions worlds I can only access in English because I do not know their own languages. I never feel like writing the same texts in both languages, nor do I feel like talking about how sick we my grandmother and I have been in the past months.
I wrote last night a whole post in English while I waited for the skype call of someone. My post was cute, informing of all little intricacies I perceive here. Then I finished my text, my conversations with the my grandmother and somehow mysteriously my whole post was lost…It was like the whole world felt like all was closing down and that I should just walk in another rode. Suddenly I decided it was not the day to write…I should just do something else something that would remind me of who I am…and to let write later.
I live with my grandmother in an old neighbour, I ask her about old neighborhoods here in our CIty Sao Paulo. She told me there were many that were old: Such as Bras , Campus Elisius and not surprisingly the central part of Sao Paulo. Many times she even showed me places where there used to be a river and no longer has anymore.
She loves this city, and is always saying she prefers the pollution to the air of the country side. I praise the old, she prays for scientists and admires inventions that according to her make the world better. As I said I am interested in the old and want to hear shamans and traditional Chinese medicine and my grandma though she believes anything is theoretically possible she prefers the new. As I am asking all these questions she puts her book down and says very seriously. Since you are not a specialist on these you should google it. They know better than me.
My grandmother is 89, she has just had an heart operation. As she came home she went to bed and in the following morning when she was asked whether she wanted coffee or tea she replied she wanted a cold beer. My grandmother follows all recommendations of doctors but also her own ideas, she also learned languages and as a child she had classes of gym in her own house and piano which she hated it. Her father was also an admirer of the future. My grandmother has always been very popular with her friends… so now having finally the permission of the doctors for it all she planned a trip for New year’s eve with her friends. Like the following years there are 6 friends in their eighties on the road to celebrate.
It was my grandmother who insisted I should go out for new year s eve somewhere. In Brazil, New years eve is in Summer. Many of us dress in white ( for peace according to popular knowledge) and then we try to go to the coast, and by midnight we should jump 7 waves for good luck. Many people make offerings to Iemanjá. One the of “Mae de Santo’s” of Candonblé.
In these syncretist religions brought from Africa, and mixed to Christianity such as Candomblé there are many figures which are like goddesses and gods who are not ever good nor bad. Very much like greek gods these “mae de santos”, and “pais de santos” carry power and human personalities. Good and Bad is a consequence of your relation with that figure. So when you go to the beach to sea fireworks, we sea offerings in the beach and in the sea. We all avoid stepping in anything. Atheist or not most Brazilians are afraid to step in these offerings.
My parents did not want me to go anywhere, but they do not enjoy new years eve as much of all of us do. But luckily Doutor Getulio told me I should go. So we prepare ourselves, we are going to our beach house house by the coast of the state of Sao Paulo. Initially, in another life time, when I had planned being in these house with 8 people. Now the world collapsed and like my message I never heard nor these new years eve is what I wanted.
So we decided to invite people we love to celebrate life. There is apparently a saying in Brazil that when all goes wrong what one should do a party. So that is what we prepare for: we prepare now for a party not sure whether we are hosting 5 people or 17 in the house….. we do not care, my cousin and me, Like in Colombia I hope we will be able to celebrate “In shallah”
Love from Sao Paulo