I am sitting in the icafe right now after having spent two hours at Ipanema beach reading the latest Harry Potter book and observing life around me. Today on my way down the elevator to go to the beach a man getting on the elevator with a lot of luggage accidentally bumped into me. He said “excuse me” which in any other context would make me politely smile and say “no problem” but here in Brazil where hearing random English spoken is like a drop of ice cold water on a hot sunny day I looked at him astonished but simply said “oh no problem” which made him in turn look at me astonished. “Wow” he said “Your English is very good.” I looked at him puzzled and then realized and explained that I was from the US. Then he frowned and said “oh ok visiting your family I suppose?” hahaha I loved it. He thought I was a Brazilian raised in the US visiting my extended family back home. I’m telling you its pretty fun to be mistaken for brazilian, my favorite mistake was when I was at a fair examining a dress and someone in Portugeese approached me and asked if I worked there.
Today I went to the beach by myself and sat on the sand and read my book and watched as the vendors walked all around me selling and cajoling others to purchase their wares. At one time one vendor went to each person and showed his purses, looked at me, skipped over me, and continued on. Its funny because if I sit with other study abroad students I do get approached but on my own I am brazilian and there’s just no use trying to get me to buy a thing!
But one vendor knows. Or so I believe. This man wears a whole Arabian Nights type of outfit. I figure he’s trying to look Arab. He has a huge sign on his back advertising his beer with huge letters saying he is MUSTAFA. Today I looked at him as he walked by and couldnt help but grin at how random his choice in attire was. He paused to look curiously at me then down at his sign and pointed to the name Mustafa and began laughing. He shook his head as though to convey something and then smiling trudged on. I cant help but think he knew. I may have to snap a picture of him next time I see him.
Well off I go now. Hope you all are doing well.