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Itaparica Island

It's been so long I haven't written anything that I can hardly remember how to use this keyboard...

Being a Turkish one, keys don't always match when you type in English.

So? Where did I leave you? Somewhere in Salvador, I guess, in the big city, refitting the boat. Nothing notable had to be said and I let myself sink into obliviousness of you, and all the others waiting for news. Ones in a while a few words were trying to push their way on the computer screen but I always found a way to push them back in my mind so I could linger a little longer, on my cloud, cut from the outside world, until my sister Nathalie told me that every day she checked the website, with never new words, new images, new thoughts to feed her appetite. I felt quite bad about this, so here I am, quite uncertain of what to say.

In Salvador we have been working on Mardek, making it ready for our next leg. We have to wait around this area for spring to come in, for the winds to change and by this open their door to the south, Uruguay and Argentina. The thing when you start working on a boat is that with every single thing you fix, something else will add to the "to do" list, it's a never ending story and at some point choices must be made, things must be left unfixed, but which are the things that really need a fix, and which are the ones that can just be left for us to find a way around?

When the much waited for package arrived from Belgium with the spare part for our gas supply we fled the city and entered nature untouched... well not really untouched, but unspoiled at the very least. Salvador is in a large bay, filled with little islands, some sow low that they disappear as the tide rises, some where colourful fishermen's villages stand as if time is taking a very long nap, with smiling people and giggling kids in it's houses and earth streets. We have been sailing from one place to another, throwing anchor when the surroundings felt like paradise.

I wake up and crawl out of bed, I look outside as the sun is rising. The mist is cutting the rays of light, changing all colours into shades of white. White water, white sky, white trees, just the fishermen's canoes are black, and then only the ones really close to us. I rub my eyes to make sure of what I see, stretch my body and realize that all is wet, as if it had just rained, but even the parts protected by rain are covered with swollen droplets of mist. All is peaceful and filled with beauty. I love it when the world becomes monochromatic, when the very nature of the atmosphere alters the travelling of sound, when your senses receive unusual information and conscious life has a quality of the world of dreams. Suddenly a red ribbon moves towards me, I know they are red birds, but I try to shut this knowledge out of my mind, and I look as red becomes pink and then vanishes in the white it came from. This, is going to be a very good day.

We row the dinghy towards an old and abandoned convent, and take a good walk in the countryside, long tailed grey little monkeys play around in the trees, their heads smaller than my fist, jumping from one branch to another, from eucalyptus to palm, from palm to banana and back again, sometimes an intrepid one stops and looks at us making faces to scare us. Filled with love for it all we walk on, until we reach the village again, we find their playground, a football field made of white sand and play with our frisbee, and soon with the children. In those very little villages away from civilization, away from rush and stress I greet every person I see, on their faces a smile, some are shy, some are sweet, some happy, some are all of the above and then ones in a while, stars shine in their eyes, as if just the view of us opens a whole new world to them, opens a whole new world to me.

Then we lift our anchor, and sail on, to the island of Itaparica, on the way a dozen of dolphins play at hide and seek or something, just at the side of the boat, sometimes making spectacular jumps showing us their pink bellies, we're going into town to make some groceries and fill the boat with water, then we'll go to some waterfall, at least, that's our plan, but first, a hot water shower...

Itaparica Island, Brasil / 28.08.2005

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