Thanksgiving dinner didn’t end up happening until Sunday night, but better late than never, right? Keia and I got up and worked out on Sunday morning, planned a menu and then went grocery shopping to hunt down all of the things we would need. Three supermarkets later we had our hands on some brown sugar, but unfortunately cranberry sauce never showed its face.
- Roasted Chicken (it’s tough to get your hands on a turkey here)
- Green Bean Casserole
- Southern Cornbread Stuffing
- Mashed Potatoes and (sort of) Gravy
- Warm Apple Crisp with Vanilla Ice Cream
Our friends all gathered at Joe’s apartment, we put some “futebol americana” on the TV and made everyone go around the circle to say what they were thankful for before we ate. The food all turned out pretty well, if I do say so myself, and it might have been the first Thanksgiving I’ve ever had that there were NO leftovers. (That is to say we ate a LOT.)
The days after our trip and leading up to Thanksgiving were filled with catching up on schoolwork, getting back into a workout routine, and hitting the beach to watch Joe do some surfing and Ribamar in a volleyball tournament. Joe ended up participating in a surf competition down in Barra, but Keia and I didn’t make it out there on Saturday and on Sunday the rain came. It hasn’t stopped yet either. We’re looking at the sky to open up on Thursday at the earliest, and then there are some more specks but a fairly clear next week.
Fortunately, I kind of like to run in the rain, which is what I think I am about to go do next before I sit down to think about the projects we have coming up. I need a topic for my simulation project and to come up with some interview questions for my personal research. We’ve started to learn Arena, which is really neat simulation software that is great for statistical visual modeling. We were supposed to be running another experiment for our Capstone project today, but the organizers at the library we were going to work with in Rocinha haven’t gotten back to us about scheduling a specific time.
Coming up in two weekends is an event called Startup Weekend here in Rio de Janeiro. This coming weekend it’s in São Paulo, and they have these weekends all over the world. The idea is that all of the participants and organizers gather together on a Friday evening either with ideas for a startup company or the will to help start one up. No products or formal research are allowed to be in the works yet. Those who have ideas present them, and teams are made based on where your interests lie. Each team is given 54 hours and some resources to essentially kick start this company, and everyone comes together on Sunday night to present demos and be judged. I’m sure one company wins a prize, and maybe some others win smaller prizes, but I have to do some more of my own research before I decide whether I want to participate or not. Joe has already signed up, but the weekend it’s happening in Rio will be the 3 days leading up to an exam in our MLG class, and both our simulation and MLG project deadlines.
As of tomorrow, we only have 3 weeks left here, so send your Brazilian souvenir requests this way! On our list of things we still need to do before leaving Rio are seeing a “jogo de futebol” (soccer game- the season is ending though, so hopefully we can find tickets for this Sunday) and climbing Pedra da Gávea (preferably for sunrise, but I’d be happy just to get up there). I’m off to run, drop off my laundry, and do some grocery shopping before I get down to work. It’s a lot easier to get things done in this city when the weather is bad, and I can’t just say “Forget it! To the beach!”
I hope everyone had a Happy Thanksgiving themselves, and I can’t wait to see you all soon!