Got two poetry rejections within twelve hours so I’m a little subdued today but that didn’t stop me from getting errands done. I dropped off my laundry at the lavedeira in the apartment building where I’m renting. I am being spoiled paying someone to wash my clothes for me but I’m on vacation. Unfortunately, it did highlight how far I have to go with my Portuguese. When I dropped the clothes off, the lady asked “Today?” in Portuguese which is hoje but I heard “Where?” which is onde. It wasn’t until well after a lot of hand waving that I finally figured out what she asked and then, in the elevator ride back up to the apartment, a lady asked if I lived here and, even though I know all those words, I could not figure it out. My verbal comprehension is pathetic but at least I can read reasonably well.
After errands, it was lunch time and match time and I had noticed a restaurant advertising moqueca which was one of the traditional Bahian dishes that I had yet to try. While I was waiting for my lunch the restaurant filled up with French fans. I felt a little bad eating when all they were doing was drinking but c’est la vie, n’est-ce pas?
It turns out that I had had moqueca before, for lunch during my first week here but this time I had moqueca with fish and they mean that literally! There was the vast majority of a fish bubbling away under the yellow saffron sauce with green and red peppers. I was pulling little bones out of my mouth and sections of spine from the flesh but it was a wonderful meal. No need for dinner tonight.
As I write this I am watching the crescent moon set in the west. I’m hoping for another clear night. Last night, in addition to seeing the planets Mars and Saturn, which my northern hemisphere readers can see too, I was able to see all four stars of the southern cross where usually I can only see three. I also had a good look at the constellation Centaurus, where Alpha Centauri appears. I don’t quite see the centaur but it’s the first time I’ve been able to really see the night sky south of the equator. It’s very odd to see Scorpius right over head. It looks so small there compared to my usual view of it on the southern horizon. That’s the Moon illusion for you. If I had a good northern horizon I would just be able to see the big dipper. I’m glad a building is blocking that view since it might freak me out.
Tomorrow, my penultimate match: Belgium-U.S.A.!