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We are out of Foz

Well, it has been a wild four days here in Foz do Iguacu. This is the social and travel entry, with KDE and FTF related ones to follow. First off, it was fun to see old friends again — Helio in particular, and a belated congratulations to him for joining Collabora. Met many new friends, from Python Brasil, from KDE MG (not the racing car, but Minas Gerais). Heard from Ane Cecilia about her GSOC work on Plasma, watched some Gluon games, saw a bit of Rocs, and had James Italiano explain Fluid to me. All very impressive pieces of technology or innovation. Anne-Marie Mahfouf was here as well, on vacation, and we just kept having to say to various KDE-BR folk “you need to go to Akademy.” Good times.

As for the Iguacu Falls themselves, Eleanor Roosevelt was right. Four of us — Sandro, James, Anne-Marie and myself — went on saturday afternoon. There had been a heavy rain and wind storm in the morning, so there were trees down all over Foz; however, mere rain doesn’t get you nearly as wet as the swollen river thundering over the falls into the Devil’s Throat. Advice: wear sandals and short shorts, and buy the raincoat.

Going to Paraguay for shopping is a popular pastime here, so I joined in an expedition this morning. Expedition is the wrong word, since it’s a ten minute taxi ride across the Friendship Bridge. However, shopping in an area crushed by poverty feels very wrong. The contrast between the two sides of Foz is striking and uncomfortable. The Brasilian side of Foz is relatively clean and neat, and — although I have very little material for comparison — feels safe and somewhat welcoming. I know I’ll be planning for next year.

2 Responses to “We are out of Foz”

  1. Eduardo Says:

    I am from Paraguay, and the “Paraguayan” side of Foz has a name: Ciudad del Este. It is not poor at all in terms of cash flow; it might even be one of the top 10 cities in terms of money being exchanged there. But there is widespread corruption, and with it, poverty. We are slowly trying to improve things, but we have to fight against the culture.

    I’m kind of sad that you went to my country just for shopping. That doesn’t do it justice! Try the Monda-y Falls, for example, wich is a mere 30 km ride from Foz; and there are many other attractions.

    And remember, there are KDE people at this side of the border, and not just at the 800 pound gorilla, er, Brazil.

    Regards,

    Eduardo
    Member of KDE-ES
    (Spanish KDE l10n team)

  2. adridg Says:

    Eduardo, thanks for your reply. Unfortunately, given three hours time and thirty reais in my pocket, a quick visit to Ciudad del Este was all that was in the cards. Glad to hear, too, that KDE-ES is active and alive in South America — and one day, when there’s a Free Software conference in Paraguay, give me a call, ok?