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May 8 - 9 : Rest of team arrives in Brazil!

posted May 9, 2012, 3:52 PM by Julie Bateman   [ updated May 9, 2012, 3:53 PM ]
Flying over the Pantanal

We are now numbering thirteen in the Pantanal! After a relatively relaxing 23 hour trip from Detroit, and only one false landing by the plane in Cuiabá, everyone and almost everyone's baggage is here. We were a bit concerned with some of our luggage, particularly the fragile solar panel that landed up on the ground inside the conveyer belt of the Sao Paulo airport. Also of concern was the internet system, which looks like a second grader's attempt at making a bomb. Customs in Sao Paulo consists of walking by a guy who sometimes gives your dirty looks, and then contemplates pulling you aside, which fortunately he did not.

The entire crew of thirteen spent the night at Pousada Pantaneira, our favorite place right near the Transpantaneira. We had a traditional dinner of espetos which are typically sticks of delicious steak, chicken, pork, or sausage, also available in cheese for vegetarians.

TV Reporter showed up on our doorstep earlier on the first morning we all arrived. From Left to right: Reporter, Cory VonAchen, Greg Ewing, Alistair Hayden, Chris Hannaford, Julie Bateman, Belazinha, Ethan ShirleyThe next day, a reporter showed up at our doorstep for quick interview about our work and plans for the summer, who knows we might be famous in the municipality of Poconé or maybe even in the state of Mato Grosso! We then set out for errands. The Kombi as always needs more love - this time she wanted two new tires after one broke and the spare was found to be flat. We set off on foot for a few errands to the construction store; most of the big materials (cement, sand, gravel, etc) are already on order and should arrive to site in the near future.

The water systems team took off for the Pantanal at about 3 PM today, and the water tower team is staying on more night in Poconé. Next post, will be more about these towers!