Monday, December 15, 2008

Bife, Feijoada e Aipim

Today was a mellow, hang at the beach day. Kitatay's place is literally a 5 minute walk from Praia do Porto da Barra, the main beach in this area. All I wanted to do was go to the beach. earlier, I'd steered away from this main one, because it is CRAZY packed. But it's a Monday, I thought. Can't be that bad!

Well, it wasn't as nuts as it had been on the weekend, but it was still a decent crowd. I laid out not too far from Forte Santa Maria, where some guys were fishing on the deeper side of the wall they were sitting on. "It's like a swimming pool," Felipe had said to me earlier, and that's exactly what it was like. A crystal, pale green, lukewarm swimming pool, with little schools of fish cruising at the wading depth, and boats not too far out on a lovely bay. There were lots of kids there, but it was so great in the water that they didn't bother me (cuz usually they do). Even when I was floating peacefully and a couple kids suddenly got pushed in my direction by their dad on a very cool inflatable rocket, we all just yelled "Ahhhhhh!" and laughed. It's just THAT GREAT. I could have stayed there all day, if I didn't get hungry eventually.

I had dinner back at Portal Do Mar, as I was starving from a lazy day in the water (too much sunshine and sea can do that to you) and the portions at this place usually last me well into the next day. More steak and beans and yuca came my way (although my flirty waiter wasn't there, nor were my drinking buddies, sadly). My new waiter taught me the proper pronunciation of my meal: bife (steak), feijoada (bean stew - technically), and aipim (yuca). I thought, this I can remember. So simple, but so yummy. The beans - sorry, feijoada - are the most amazing thing. I had them my first night as well. The remind me of my mom's beans - I got the recipe from her years ago but have yet to try it out. These beans are so delicious that they almost make me cry - and I think about how now that my mom has passed, I won't get them from her again. I'd better try that recipe when I get home!