Paraty, Brazil

Money problems

Chilling with the marmosets

Thursday was forecast to be the hottest, it was also meant to rain, but again the rain didn’t show up. We played with the marmosets at the hotel. They jumped from tree to tree and I tried to snap a midair shot. We talked work, internet, and life with the couple opposite us; the guy had lived in Brazil for a few years, but now lived in London, working with internet start-ups in Old Street, which was too much of a coincidence for my liking.

Marmoset at Eliconial hotel
Marmoset at Eliconial hotel

We didn’t do much and it was lovely. We walked along the beach, swum in the sea and bathed in the sun. We had lunch at La Luna; tasty steak and fish with the usual beans, salad, rice and chip sides. The steak in Brazil is so big, tasty and cheap, but you can’t help feeling somewhat guilty that you’re supporting the deforestation. Next to us two dogs gave us starving puppy eyes.

The bar was right on the sea front and after eating we lay down on an outdoor bed, watched the sea and listened to music, music perfect for sitting beneath a coconut tree.

It seems the sea had washed off our sunscreen, and our shoulders were emanating heat, they’d turned a wonderful shade of red. The hoteliers found it hilarious.

“cartao no localazido”

In town we tried to do some shopping, but when it came to getting cash none of the ATMs in any of the three banks would give us any. We tried four cards from four different banks, Visa, Amex and MasterCard, all failed, “cartao no localazido”. This could be bad. But when we bought our bus tickets for the return to Rio the cards worked in their PIN machine, so we could at least buy things with plastic.

And that’s how it was for the rest of the holiday, the ATM’s never worked again, we changed up the spare dollars we had and got a cash advance from the hotel to tide us over. We found others with the same problem.

Cobbled Paraty street at night
Cobbled Paraty street at night

That night we ate at a posh looking black-and-white Italian restaurant, we’d been eyeing it up all week. Inside a charming but timid waiter nervously tried his English, and at the back, near an open courtyard and the cool night air we ordered. I took the opportunity to try an Acerola juice, scrumptious but hard to describe, with it I had palmito and pesto ravioli.

We walked home along the beach again, watching a drunken group of travellers in front of us, as they weaved about the road; thick English, Australian and American accents permeating the air as they searched for an open bar. We quietly passed them by, and resumed the nighttime stroll. The waves were calm and the breeze cool, crabs scuttled by, and a friendly dog guided us home, through long grass, to the road and the hotel’s muddy driveway. Goodbye little doggy.

Boat trip →