In the afternoon we got off the coach of Cidade Sol on the Ubaitaba-Bahia bus terminal. The only arangement with our good friend Antonio -nickname: Pão Comum / Community Bread- was that he knew we would arrive at approx. four o’ clock. We were on schedule, he wasn’t there, we didn’t know his address, but we know him to be quite a well known public figure. First we went to the nearby restaurant which was a friend of him. The restaurant had a new owner, not able to help us with our inquiry. We went onwards with asking the questions at the taxi stand. Hitting the nail on the head at once. Yes they knew him all right, they said. I said: He is born, raised and living in Aurelino Leal accross the river. No no, was their reply, he lives in Ubaitaba. Are you sure? Yes, very sure. We believed them and stepped in the taxi. Right they were, and honest as well. Within 10 minutes we drove into the street and met him in front of his new house and hugging along started Bahian style.
His complete family was there, wife, daughters and grand children. After this warm hearted welcome we were invited into their home and were showed around. Refreshments were offered during a bit of relaxation on their Sofa. After some socializing in his Casa, we went out for something to eat at one of Antonio’s favorite bar terraces in Ubaitaba. A few trays with shellfish, crab and another type of fish were served out, accompanied by some rice and typical other Bahian food types. Fish is there a logical food component, due to the rich source that streams through the town.The River Contas does split Ubaitaba from Aurelino Leal on the other side. We had a good time in the lovely evening climate on a Ubaitaba terrace with Antonio and his wife, enjoying good food, drinks and fun among- and around us.
During our communication regarding our visit to them we settled for two bottles of good whisky, a bit of singing together with playing guitar and visiting his church the next morning. Antonio, as most Brazilians, loves music and he does play guitar in the Roman Catholic church since many years. I knew this, so, that is why we reached this settlement. We handed over our gift to him, two bottles all right, but shocking enough no whisky, only wine wrapped in the package. My o my, the wine was a gift to another couple that we visited on the Itaparica Island.
Anyway, the singing was great, lots of soul in the songs, so nice. I personally will never forget this time of singing well known gospel songs and some pop songs like those of Creedence Clearwater Revival. This was a great ending of the day.
Next morning. Antonio didn’t make it to wake us up on time in order to visit the church service. When we went out at last and drove passing the church building he waved and shouted a few non understandable sentences to the church goers who were leaving at that moment in time. No long faces or hard feelings in Bahia. Subsequently we went to his office where he renders his services to the community. His nick name ‘Pao Comum’ is given him for a good reason. For us he is manager in regard to all legislation, documents and tax obligations connected to our property. The very reason for us to see him this time was to pick up our property deed. The deed was left under his custody a few years earlier. He solved a typical Brazilian problem for us in regard to registration of the deed in the appropriate cadaster.
A lot of people would think that I must be crazy to let such an important document as a property deed under the custody of somebody so far away in such an exceptional country like Brazil. The other side of the coin is we trust everything in respect to living on this planet in the hands of our Creator, Jesus Christ. But, to be honest, sometimes this thought crept into my brain as well. The moment of reception of the property deed -with all the proper registration stamps- after two years under custody, was a great blessing.
Antonio and his lady drove us to Taboquinhas that afternoon. We always feel so good when riding over the good old red clay road connection between Ubaitaba and Itacaré and Taboquinhas half way. It took us a couple of hours, due to a sanitary stop at a small bar along the road and a lunch time at ‘Restaurante Gao’ quite well known for their Pitu (a rather big sweet water lobster, plenty available in the Rio Contas / River). Life in Bahia is good to us, especially the possibility to buy ourselfs a nice meal every now and than, something we don’t often do, when back in our home land.
Remarkable was the fact that Joyce immediately recognised the restaurant and a few of the people there. You have to know that we not understood that this restaurant, selected as a special treat for us by Antonio and his wife, was the same place which somebody else adviced us a few years before. After pointing this out to mister Gao (the owner) we had a lot of fun together. Eventually pictures were taken, bill was paid and onwards we went. Antonio drove us straight into the street where the befriended family Tavares was living and laboured in the family owned business, a supermarket, a hardware store named Dois Irmãos / Two Brothers and Pousada Crecêncio in Taboquinhas.
We walked up to the cashier where the grandfather of the Tavares family was doing his job. At seeing his new ‘customers’, standing in line in front of him, he suddenly recognized us and jumped up from his chair. He started to hug us big time. We were back in Taboquinhas. Many thanks Antonio.