Monday, January 10, 2011

Sunday Jan 9 2010

Yesterday was an intense day. No dance classes but we got our fill of adrenaline and movement. Three friends and I headed to a theater performance at 10 am but got on the wrong bus so we just went to the beach :) This is the flow here. We just went with it. So we had an awesome experience at the beach, huge waves breaking strongly on rock creating huge bursts of foaming white water. It was beautiful. Very powerful. We walked around a part of Salvador I havent been before so that was really interesting to see. This was more of the city area. The coolest thing in Salvador (maybe not THE coolest but pretty awesome) is the grafiti here! Im going to put up pictures when I get home so youll see but yes, awesome and its everywhere. Im taking pictures of all of them too so Ill have a full gallery after a while. Anyways! So, we made our way back to town by bus and got off in Pelourinho area. This is a really popular area, really busy and it was about 2pm. We decided to walk down a street that we usually dont walk down but its literally the street over from the street we always walk down, broad daylight, lots of people. This street was a little less crowded but we didnt even think about it. Next thing you know, we are walking down the street and my friend Ani who is walking 5 feet infront of me gets comfronted by some dude, hunting knife in hand and starts yanking her bag from her kneck. Shes screaming and I run over to her, realizing whats happening and the guy starting sawing at the strap of her bag because she wasnt letting it go (out of shock) and I tell her to let it go and he runs away down the street. Were freaking out telling some locals to run after him and theyre all like yea right and so he go away. Poor Ani was freaking out but luckily there wasnt anything too important in the bag  (but her camera phone credit card and 10 bucks and keys to our house, which we have to change the locks now)!!!!!!!!! But she got away with all of her limbs and fingers! Jesus it was intense and scary. And its crazy because it was broad daylight and in a pretty busy area. I guess now we know always to take the main streets and now weve been told that Sunday isnt a good day to be out and about much anyways. So, there is a bit more awareness about crime here and I guess its jsut going to get worse as Carnival closes in! So, Im just not carrying much with me, taking main streets, walking in crowds, not going out late. We shall see but now we know! We went to the tourist police and everything but its unlikely that anythings going to happen. Some lucky bastard is probably flipping through Anis photos right now or maybes hes already sold it. And so it is.... Last night, after relaxing a bit, we all went to a Candomble ceremony. It was for the Orixa Oxala. This is the Orixa in Candomble that is related to Jesus Christ, so he is kind of the father of the Orixas. We had to wear all white as did everyone who was worshipping and at the ceremony. Lots of girls from the Dance Intensive went in a van together, which Rosangela organized for us. The ceremony was like a church mass setting but the worship was different bobviously. There were two or three big chairs in the center of the room, like throwns, where two elders sat. There was also a statue of Oxala there. There was a circle of people dancing around this center. Everyone dressed in white, dancing to the drums being played. This is the actual practice of the dances that we have learned in class. This is how they are actually used in the religion. Drums are played, specific rhythms for each Orixa, and the devotees dance in a circle, doing the dance of the Orixa in praise. Very much like some other religions, like a friend said it reminded her of church in the South, people are overtaken by the Spirit and jump up, fall down, seize up, shake, whatever, when they are taken by the spirit. It was really intense to see and brought up a lot of questions and thoughts. It was really beautiful and very powerful and cool to see an actual ceremony and feel the energy of it. So, it was a full day, with a large spectrum of energies and realizations!  I think this day raised way more questions than answers... the search for truth continues!!!!!!!!!! Blessings on the safety of us all. <3 Ill put some pictures up soon!

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