The landscape starts with the same fields and grasslands as I shared yesterday but after a while it changes to rolling hills with occasional wooded areas. Even though it is dry, it is beautiful countryside and we passed by towns like: Jatai, Murutinga do Sul, Valparaiso, Aparecida Do Taboado, Aracatuba as we drove. Each town has a white concrete sign at the entrance of the city declaring their identity. They all seem like typical small towns in this region of Brazil. With seven foot high walls surrounding the ceramic block homes with their tile roofs and laundry hanging on the line to dry. A posto (gas station) or two on the corner and little luncheonette that serves a lunch buffet of beans, rice, and meat for the locals and truckers traveling down the road. Little stores selling the typical hardware, groceries, produce, etc and each one selling their specific niche. (no K-Marts or Walmarts here)
On our journey, I spend a little time studying our travel plans and the twenty six states of Brazil (that does not include the federal district which includes Brasilia as it is not actually a state). I learn how there were originally two states which were
controlled by the Portuguese Royal Family. These two states have been divided and the state lines have changed over the decades to their current boundaries. Actually this year the state of Para (in northern Brazil) will be deciding whether to split their state up into two or three different states. I was not able to find out when this decision will be made but we may see a Brazil with twenty seven or twenty eight states soon. As with history in the United States, I find it interesting to learn about Brazil's history and I am sure I will be able to find time to learn while on this road trip. On our current travels, we will be traveling through six of the states: Goias, Mato Grossa do Sul, Sao Paulo, Parana, Santa Catarina, and Rio Grande do Sul. This first day is a lot of driving and little site seeing as planned, but we do stop late in the afternoon at a roadside stand and buy a couple of pineapples. The lady cuts them up for us and we devour them quickly. There is nothing like a fresh picked pineapple for an afternoon snack.
As we drive the many miles of today's journey, the ipe trees appear quite frequently as well. The yellow and purple trees are just as beautiful as the day before and help us pass the time. Soon we come across a huge dam and reservoir. The Represa de Promissao was finished in 1975 on the Tiete River. It creates power for the state of Sao Paulo and is an important part of the states infrastructure. Comparable to the damn in Yankton South Dakota in size, but there is no town and only sparse recreational fishing on the lake created by the dam. (no jet skis, boating, summer cabins, etc.) It is a beautiful man made structure and it is not hard to see how powerful it is and how much energy it can create.
Shortly after the sun sets we arrive in Lins Brazil and since it is a little further then we expected to travel today, we decide to stop for the evening. There are a couple of chain hotels but no Marriotts or Best Westerns in town. We end up choosing a local hotel and next on our adgenda is dinner, a nice Brazilian buffet of course. We take a short trip around town and soon find a local restuarant. After eating, we decide it is time to head back and turn in early so we can get plenty of rest and be prepared for the next day of road trip. It has been a great day with little distraction from our journey and a good start to our travels.
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|Can you see the macaws?|
|Ipe tree - simply marvelous|
|Another Difference -- Palm trees lining the driveway instead of oak.|
|And the terrain changed!|
To read "Cross Coutry Travel - Day 3" click here