Monday, March 25, 2013

Continuing Education??? part 2

OK,  so a quick review on the last post and if you have not read it yet,  I suggest you do so before continuing with this read.  *click here*  I was invited to tag along with some students and faculty from the agronomy department of a couple of community colleges in northeast Iowa who are visiting Goiania.  I of course said yes and had a wonderful day as we toured the Federal University of Brazil's Ag department and a rice research center here in Goiania before we explored the the central market and a little of the city.  At the end of the day they invited me to join them for dinner and a "foteball" game and that is where we left of on the last post.
Since the time was short in between our arrival and departure at the hotel, I decided to hang out  instead of heading home.  One of the college professors (Dan) and I decided to take a quick walk to kill the hour so we headed south on the Avenida Republica Do Libano with it enormous palm trees down the middle.  The sun was hot but fortunately there is a lot of shade on our journey today.  Dan is a horticulturalist and since I used to work with plants for an interior plantscape company,  we talked quite a bit about plants and flowers.  We are both amazed at the plants that grow here that we use for indoor plants back in the USA.  It is amazing to see just how large they get here in their natural habitat.  Trees like ficus, lyrata, and rubber plants just to name a few.  And the flowers,  yes the flowers,  the kind that grow wild here like orchids and ginger or the many varieties we have never seen below.  I think he was impressed with how much I knew about plant material and I truly enjoyed talking with someone who appreciated it on a different level.  Our walk takes us to the Parque Aim Tamandare a few blocks away.  The group had gone to the sun moon fair here a couple nights ago so we talked about that a bit and just how different the square was during the day.  I point out a few of the well known places that line the park.  When we get to the far side of the park he asks about all the guys laying in wait with buckets and rags.  I explain they are waiting for the next  dirty car to pull in for a true hand car wash. Goiania provides water to these entrepreneurs who set up shop to make money.  This is a service provided in several parks throughout the city.  It is a nice afternoon and there are so many trees and flowers to show, but time runs out and soon we head back to the hotel.
Everyone loads onto the bus for the evenings activities with first stop being dinner.  After a short ride we pull into a McDonalds parking lot.  This is a little bit of a let down for me as I thought the plan was to eat at Flamboyant Mall and if you know me you know how little I like McDonalds.  But I am a guest this evening and we are probably saving time by eating here. The leaders of the group head to the mall next door to purchase tickets for a future days activity.  They leave Maria (another new Brazilian friend) and myself to help the students get their dinner ordered.  Well,  Maria started helping them out as they all formed a single line at one of the cashiers. When the last customer in the other line ordered I decided to break away and help one of
the students order  but a McDonalds employee tried to herd us back into line until I explained to her I spoke a little Portuguese.  She let us continue to the cashier with no line and soon I was assisting more students with their orders.  It was really easy enough as many of the items are in English like chicken bacon or bacon cheese.  The students only needed help if they didn't want something like tomatoes or onions on their sandwich.  Thanks to my experience ordering at Subway close to home,  I had all the sandwich terms down pat.  They also welcomed my help in dealing with the Brazilian money exchange.   After everyone was finished I ordered my big mac and sat down to eat with the Maria and Dan.
The stadium is only a few blocks away and soon the bus arrives and we all exit.  It is a fairly cool evening and by this time it is pretty dark.  The other foteball game I attended was an afternoon game so I am curious about this experience.  Several of the students purchase jerseys for the local Goias team and then we head into the stadium and find our seats.  The group sits on the family friendly side which will be an interesting difference as well.   The seats in the stadium begin to fill until about 1/3 are full.   The crowd on the other side begin their usual jumping and chanting.  Tonight Goias is playing Anapolis in a regular season game.
As we sit waiting for the game to start I realize I know little about this team getting my support for the second time so I must find out a little about them.  This team Goias, of Emerald and white is one of the largest foteball clubs in west-central Brazil.  It was formed in 1943 and has a long history with the city of Goiania.  Its accomplishments include taking first place in series B in 1999 and 2014 as well as 23 state and 3 regional championships over the years.   They play most of their home games in a smaller stadium which accommodates around 10,000 fans but tonight like the previous game I went to watch them play is at Estadio Serra Dourada Stadium which can seat five times the number of fans.  (thanks wiki)
Well this brings us back to this evening and the game is played in front of a fairly small crowd. The rowdy section across the way is still loud and don't stop jumping around for at least the first half.  I have to admit I find myself wishing I was over there with them as it was such a different experience.  You feel the passion of Brazilian foteball.  For tonight I will have to be satisfied with the excitement generated as Goias is awarded a penalty kick and scores a goal.  Pretty cool as this is my first experience of Goias scoring and it is followed by two more goals in the second half as Goias wins 3 to 0.  The clock winds down and the referee signals the end of the game.  It is time to head back to the bus and say goodnight for the evening.  As we travel back to the hotel where my ride home awaits I am invited to join the group the rest of the week.  We will have to see how that all plays out.


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