Monday, November 28, 2011

Old Architecture

I love the feel of the school that the boys attend. It's old. It has history. It's peaceful. The architecture reminds me of New Orleans - home.

A few weeks ago, Sam wanted me to be at school with him again. At first I was in the classroom for about a week. Even though his teacher was very welcoming and reassuring, I felt like I was distracting the students. So the next week I sat outside on a bench in the recess area. Then, the last couple days in the office. The secretary gestured for me to sit in a side room. Thank you, Elisabet! Those rock-solid benches in the foyer were a little hard on the rear after just 10 minutes.

This room was such a nice place to spend time. I was out of people's way, and I could knit, read the paper, look out the window... And after sitting there on Thursday, I knew I needed to bring my camera back on Friday.

The crossbars on the windows (not sure what their proper name is) are a bit big to keep mosquitoes out (luckily I didn't notice any anyway), and pretty flimsy for thieves. I think they're meant to keep birds from flying inside.

Reading the paper. On the left is Pele, one of the best futebol players in the history of the sport - he played for Santos. On the right is an up-and-coming futebol player that also plays for Santos. His name is Neymar. I don't know the sport well enough to know if he is as good as Pele was, but they seem to be compared in the paper quite a bit.

After a while I decided to venture over to the room across the hall.

This is the room where we met and filled out some paperwork on the boys' first day of school.

Sam running, having lots of fun and not needing me in the least.

After Elisabet told me the floor was over 100 years old, I felt it deserved a close-up.

Later, the sun came out!

Bathroom window.

There were a few cracks in the plaster on the ceiling. Did I mention I was there for almost FIVE hours?

These little burlap dudes were in the corner.

Stained-glass window on the chapel, though from this side it's hard to tell it's stained-glass.

Reflection in the window.

At some point I noticed some doors leading outside. I tried to open them, but I was making too much noise.

Although there were more productive things I could have been doing had I NOT needed to be at school, I had fun playing with my camera this day. And was happy that Sam was happy just knowing I was there.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Pode ser?

This Pepsi commercial was showing on TV regularly last month, and really helped us to learn the phrase Pode ser? Literally this translates to Can it be?, but when used means more along the lines of Is that okay?

The first line of the commercial is a waiter presenting the can of Pepsi to the fella, stating/asking "Só tem Pepsi. Pode ser?" There's only Pepsi... is that okay? Presumably the customer requested a Coke. Actually, Coka is what they say here.

We think it's funny. ;o)

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

False friends, linguistically speaking

False friends are words that sound similar enough between the language you know and the language you are learning that you think you know what they mean.

Many times this IS the case. A word sounds similar in English and it means the same thing in Portuguese. Such as:

fine=fina (at least in the thin, or finely ground flour sense of the word, pronounced FEE-na)
clip=clipe (like a paper clip, pronounced CLI-pee)

But it's the false friends that jazz up a conversation because they can be taken the wrong way, which may create tension or comedy. Or both. A few that I've encountered so far:

Emprego - this sounded like pregnant to me, and that's how I took it when someone told me that a woman they knew was emprego. I smiled and made a gesture of a big round belly and said "Ahhhh... bebê??!!!" To which they laughed and indicated that's not what they meant. A few days later I saw the word again in the want-ads of the newspaper. Emprego = job, or employed.

A viola in English is the big sister to the violin. In Portuguese a violão is a guitar.

Balconista - this is another word that I saw in the want-ads of the paper. Maybe it's just me, but my mind went to a pretty lady hanging off a balcony, possibly with some pole dancing involved?? My trusty dictionary informed me that a balconista is a sales clerk.

The biggest example between Spanish and Portuguese that I've heard so far is mas. Mas means more in Spanish, and but in Portuguese.

Off the topic of false friends, but on still on the topic of linguistics, I've noticed there is a one letter difference between luxury (luxo, pronounced LOO-sho), and garbage (lixo, pronounced LEE-sho). This screams of an excellent title for a trash-to-treasure television program on a home&garden type channel! Lixo ao Luxo - it must exist!!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Yummy panettone dessert

I was looking through A Tribuna this evening and saw this vision of deliciousness in the Pão de Açúcar advertisement (local grocery chain). They take out the inside of the panettonne and layer in a creamy custard, put the top back on, and cover with ganache. Brilliant!!

Panettone is very popular here for the Christmas season, which is in full swing here as everywhere in North America. I've seen Panettone sold in Canada and the U.S. around the holidays, maybe on an endcap. But there is a LARGE presence of Panetonne in the stores here, due to the big Italian influence in this part of Brazil, I suspect.

If you want to see the very nice lady Brazilian chef demonstrate for you, here's the play by play of how to make it from YouTube.

And here's a link to the recipe in Portuguese. Below is the traslation from Google, with a few modifications, as it didn't quite make sense. The leaves of gelatin are a new to me, I'll have to look for those. If you're in The States or Canada, maybe use one envelope of plain gelatin??

Between watching the video and having the recipe below, it should come out pretty close - I think I'll try to make it this weekend. :o) Hmmm, just remembered I don't have my mixer OR my kitchen scale. Well, I may try anyway.


Filling: White wine English cream
190 ml of white wine
200 g of sugar
7 egg yolks
juice of half a lime
425 g of heavy cream
4 leaves of gelatine


Boil in a saucepan half the amount of wine, lime juice and 100 g of sugar.
, in a mixer beat the egg yolks with remaining sugar until creamy.
Add the remaining
wine and stir in cream.
Join this cream to first mixture over low heat and stir constantly. Allow to cool.
Add the 4 softened gelatine leaves in cream and heavy cream
lightly beaten. Mix together and chill a little.

Note: To soften the gelatin, it must be hydrated in cold water, then
sifted into another container and softened minutes before using the microwave
(20 seconds) or in a double boiler on low heat.
For filling, cut off about the top 1 inch of the cake, and remove the excess inside dough, leaving the sides approximately 3 cm thick. Add the cream, and add the part of the cake that you took out making to separate layers with the cream (watch the video!).

Coverage: dark chocolate ganache
150 g of cream
250 g dark chocolate
Melt chocolate in double boiler. In a saucepan, heat the cream until it is warm and stir in the melted chocolate. To decorate, spread the ganache around the cake.