Thursday, August 2, 2007

Day two - Curitiba

Wikipedia has a pretty good page or two about Curitiba which is south of Sao Paulo in Panamá state. Today was a super day. I'll do my complaining first. The train was not heated and last night it was -1, and it had very bad windows so it was difficult to see the scenery let alone take any decent photos. After an hour or so when the sun had warmed the train, I walked up and stood behind the driver - taking pictures out his open side window and out the front beside his head. I was able to take a few nice photos. For the total day I took 329 and deleted 41 - there probably are another 20 that are marginal and will end up deleted later when I look at them closer. The train wound up a mountain of the Serra do Mar, along a track that was originally built in 1885.

Thank god it has been maintained and the bridges reinforced since then, because it pretty much hangs on the side of the mountain and down into the city of Morretes. This pretty little colonial town is two blocks wide and about 4 blocks long, with two small parks along the river. Many of the buildings have the original façades and have been painted in the yellow, blues, whites and oranges favored in the 1800s. There were some nice hand crafts and very good photos ops. We had lunch in a restaurant specializing in barreado, a goulash like meat dish mixed with farinha which tastes delicious but was like a brick on the stomach for two hours after. The desert as a banana, cinnamon, icecream and chocolate concoction that drew bees to our table. We fought them off in a valiant effort to eat the whole thing ourselves.

more tomorrow -

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