The Cane Mutiny

Day 2..pousada Veronese to Cravinhos. (With a little help)
Distance 33 km

The pousada Veronese was in the middle of those endless cane fields
It ‘s a farm with a decent enough blockhouse run by three ladies of a certain age
The walls are covred in graffiti drawn in a childish hand. I wasn’t sure whether it was an indulgence of grandmotherky pride or something more sinister.  An uneasy feeling which was reinforced when two toddlers  with jet black eyes appeared from nowhere and stood silently watching  me eat while they held hands. Midwich cuckoo like
But Elena the eldest of the three ladies  made me a delicious meal. It was one of those occasions when saying ” I am English I don’t understand ‘ backfired
IElena showed me how to do everything. How to use a cup. What salt is for. That coffee must be lifted to the mouth. And – this was my favourite – : how to peel a banana

All this while I furiously swatted  away mosquitoes from my face like some sort of manic traffic policeman on acid

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I set off into the sugar cane as it began to rain
At first I laughed it off. The yellow arrows were plentiful and I was confidently singing
Then the lightning started
Im here to tell you there is no shelter in the middle of those vast plantations
I am not lyying. I saw forked lightning striking the grouvd mere hundreds of metres away
The red earth as predicted turned into a thick gloopy quagmire. I lost my footing. Fell
Then the arrows disappeared
I was worried I admit
I wasgiven shelter in a tractor drivers’ refuge by two fantastic field workers who made it plain their work was done for the day

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We stayed in that cramped hut for 2 hours before I had to move. They were sleeping in their tractors
I got lost. The arrows had gone I doubled back 6 km
Then salvation. In the form of Marcio and Alan
They stopped their truck. Took pity on me and agreed to take me  to the Bar Goleiro. Ok I was no longer a footsore pilgrim but I’d had enough. My body rebelled. Not another step
Alan”s truck slithered and whined furiously as it fought through rivers of mud
More than once we ended up in the sugar cane
We made it to the Goleiro but it was just a bar. Not a hostel
Another 10,km to go. I was downcast but Al and Marcio bought me beers. The barman bought me food. We had a laugh (well they laughed at me) and two hours later we resumed our journey with me hanging on for dear life on the flat back

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They took me to Cravinhos where they found a pousada. They then drove off without accepting a single penny.
Two great guys in a great (if wet) country

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3 thoughts on “The Cane Mutiny

  1. sidney

    Really glad to know the experiences you are having. And also I am glad I am not walking with you otherwise I would prevent you from having such unique experiences. Good for you. Keep it that way.

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