Today started with me sleeping in too long after the hang last night, only to be surprised by the fact that things are moving right along, as far as internet in my place upstairs goes - the main cable has been put in, and tomorrow, if all things go right, I will finally have a stable net connection here.
In the afternoon José Fernandez and I started our exchange program - today I had an hour of conversational Portuguese, and tomorrow José will be the lucky recepient of my knowledge of handling the piano (once again, having this upright piano here in the pad is "paying off" manyfold). Friday we got another installment of Portuguese.
If we really stick to this regiment, I just might improve my Portuguese by the time I'd have to leave…oh well…
Afterwards, feeling an intense need to escape the premises of the Institute, I hopped on the bus going to the center and walked into the MARGS museum on Praça da Alfándego, a square with a park, which seems to be permanently under construction. I let myself to be lured by the fact that the selected works from the international Biennale Sao Paulo were being shown. The disappoinment was pretty big and reminded me of the repeated feeling of discomfort and almost irritation I had in a number of museums in Sao Paulo and elsewhere in Brazil. Not only the level of conceptual awareness seems generally to be rather behind the main trends in Europe and USA, but also the haphazard manner to place the works jumps right out at you. Obviously, this generalisation is not totally fair, but I seem to have bad luck, so far. Well, Porto Alegre might be a provincial town as far as modern art goes, but they sure know how to play their regional music - and that's what makes me one happy customer!
After the visit of museum, I quickly went through the famous Mercado, the central market, which occupies an old rectangular edifice. The colorful picture of hundreds of vendors, selling everything the regional and national food industries have to offer, somehow has put me in a more balanced state of mind again.
Tomorror evening, another visit to Parangolé is planned - a well known older Maestro, Professor Darcy Alvez holds the court there on Thursdays, and I was told to check him out, which I'll be happy to oblige.