First Post – Entering the third age

Well, I hate to admit that I am getting on in years (because mostly it doesn’t feel like it!) but when you have a birthday that makes you officially a pensioner it is hard to ignore. I thought it might be nice to celebrate the fact of entering the third age, though, with an up-to-date rite of passage, by writing my first official BLOG – so here it is.

Not that I really like the word BLOG…it is such an inelegant word, so let me dispense with it and call this a ‘journal entry’ – much more stylish, don’t you think!? And I am not quite sure, yet, what my ‘voice’ will be, will it be elegant and stylish, too, or will it turn me into a snarky old curmudgeon complaining about how the world is not the same anymore as it was. Hmmm, who knows – we will just have to see.

I had a great party for an official Old Age Pensioner, with live music from the trio that performed at our wedding last year – mainly Brazilian Samba-style music; so, it was very upbeat and good cardio-vascular exercise thank you! Lots of my new Brazilian friends present to make it a lively affair, too – but, of course none of my old friends from the homeland…so that’s another reason for starting a journal, to include you in  my current Brazilian life.

It is, of course, mid-winter here but in temperature terms that is rather like late Spring in England and, more often than not, I am wearing shorts rather than trousers. On the other hand it can be very wet and that proved to be the case on the day of my birthday party (the day before my birthday… the sun shone here on 10th June for at least part of the day)  And VERY WET it was – if I can get the hang of uploading photos  you will see our garden was flooded. The party was therefore an indoor affair rather than the planned outside party. Fortunately we had room enough for the trio to perform and have a small ‘dance-floor’ in the hallway.

One of our friends, Fabiana, has been doing a catering course that she always wanted to do and offered to be our Chef for the day. She turned up at 7.30 to prep all the  food and came in her official Chef’s outfit from the course, looking very professional. We hired a helper to clear pots and wash up for the day which meant we could all enjoy the party without having to spend ages at the sink.

It was a great ‘do’ and I enjoyed it very much, an excellent rite of passage – they do parties very well here in Brazil and with great enthusiasm. This one was quite modest (about 40 people) but they can be grand affairs, particularly at certain times of one’s life. So the first one is one most people would not recall because it is common to have a big party for a first (or sometimes a second) birthday, with clowns and children’s entertainers.

Then (for girls) the next one is the fifteenth birthday party. And (for the boys) it is the eighteenth. These sometimes involve lots of saving up to make sure the party at leasts keeps up with the “Silvas” (ie the most common surname, like keeping up with the “Jones”…!)

There seem to be a lot of small businesses whose sole focus is on supplying ‘stuff’ for parties, from balloons to streamers; from hats to fancy dress and photographers both still and video. Indeed, some people make good business as party arrangers to save you even the trouble of buying your own ‘stuff’.

Our wedding reception last year was done that way – and beautifully done it was, too. They arranged barbecue cooking, food preparation, serving of both food and drinks, and organised the many tables we needed, chairs and tablecloths and flowers, still and video photography. Thankfully, we have a big enough garden at Jacone to hold a large outdoor party so we did not need to hire a venue (hmmm, perhaps we can go into business hiring out the garden?)

I think that is perhaps enough for my first Brazilian Journal…. more another time. I will try and sort out accompanying photographs now to bring the party alive for you ….  so enjoy! I did!!

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About Keith Melton - Green Lib Dem

Retired English liberal environmentalist living in Nottinghamshire; spent six years in Brazil. Author of Historical Novel - Captain Cobbler: the Lincolnshire Uprising 1536. Active member of the Green Liberal Democrats - (pressure group in Liberal Democrats) - was Founding Chair of GLD in 1988
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4 Responses to First Post – Entering the third age

  1. john myers says:

    ..why you old rascal. You don’t look a day over “old enough to know better and young enough to still get away with it”….but that’s just me being envious…So glad you’re catching up to me now…. sorry, again, that we couldn’t make it down this year….hopefully next. I’m still in recovery mode – trying to do too much and tiring much easier than I wish to – but hey it’s better than the alternative. …love your backyard lagoon…you’re almost competition for our yard – we have had the coldest/wettest June since 1934 when they started keeping records…I wore shorts yesterday for the first time since last year..which is about time since it is now officially day six of summer. Thanks for the photos also….perhaps I’ll finally get to see the house yet. By the by, Kim gave birth to a 7 pound 7 ounze baby girl June 14th named Amber Elizabeth Hunt…baby, mother, father and grandparents both doing fine thant you.

    Love to you all, John and Brenda

  2. Lynda says:

    Oh that looks like fun but very wet. Hope you had a great birthday and I’m sorry to have missed it! Xxxxxxx

  3. Laurence says:

    Well you wouldn’t be any drier here!

  4. Liz says:

    They used to say life began at 40 but I can assure you life gets better during the 60’s! Belated Happy Birthday wishes to you

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