Life is better when you’re not sick

Well, it’s been a while, but today was the first day I feel really better after my bout with dengue – this past week I felt OK, but was really weak and had zero energy. It’s nice to feel almost normal again. It’s a little cooler tonight, and I’m loving slipping into my favorite old hole-y jeans.

This morning I was riding the bus across town. I was slouched in the seat with the wind blowing in my face and the sun on my shoulders. Thanks to the crazy rains that have been coming, it’s still fairly cool, and the sun was just right. I was enjoying my customary bus nap when we came around a corner and I smelled fresh cut grass. There’s not that many lawns in the favelas, so it’s not that common a smell, and it made me sit up with a jerk and a smile to see the piles of fresh cut grass on the soccer field as we looped around it twice. Thanks to the God of sunshine and grass and smells and wind for being alive and dengue-less today.

Rich and I had planned to go see the new Rocky movie this evening. I have never seen any Rockies, (is that right?) and Rich has spent the last few weeks bringing me up to speed on Rocky 1 through Rocky 5 (or is it 6?) He’s a bit of the aficionado of Rocky and Sylvester Stallone in general – and I’ve heard good things about this one (even though Stallone is what – 60? – and will be in a boxing match? Hmm…) But I’ve been getting psyched up to see it. Alas, ‘twas not to be.

We went down to the docks looking for a few street friends of ours we had heard were down there. And we found them. The plan was to visit for just an hour or so before heading out to see Rocky, but things took longer than planned and we didn’t end up leaving until an hour and a half after the movie started. Some other day, I guess… But time with these five boys was quality – sharing a meal, playing Uno, coloring, and having a long discussion about the Bible stories we remembered – capped by hearing G re-enact the life of Jesus. Yes, the whole thing. The others were enthralled. There’s just something about hearing the stories you’ve heard time and time again from the lips of these boys – buses, trucks and cars zooming by, dust filling the air, and beauty all around.

(My three year old neighbor from upstairs, Tamyris, just walked in the door to say hi with a chocolate mustache and chocolate dripping from her fingers… She is the one who, two months after I moved in, still greets me by saying, “Moço (young man), do you live downstairs?” Yes, I do, I answer. “I live upstairs,” she declares. And then she giggles and runs away. And now she’s back. I gotta go… Love and peace to ya’ll… I got guests to entertain.)

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4 Comments

Filed under bus, daily life, rio de janeiro, rocky, sickness, streets

4 responses to “Life is better when you’re not sick

  1. Anonymous

    Ben- I am so glad you are feeling better. I laughed about the little girl upstairs, she sounds really cute. We have been suffering from ice and 20 degree weather- that is F not C…I know you are jealous. Praying for you. Jennica

  2. josh

    As saudações, Ben.

    Bem, meu português vem ao longo de multa justa. Espere-o vão melhor. Antecipo ver você em agosto. Conversei a Seth um há poucos dias, e ele disse que ele vai a sua coisa de tradução de bíblia. Deva ser muito divertimento. Bem, tenho que ir.

    Ame-o, Josh

  3. lizzie

    ben, you’ve been on my mind a bunch lately. good to hear the dengue has left you… i remember how miserable matt was when he had it… and the smell of grass would be quite welcome to me right now. yesterday the streets were melting and the sun was shining. i was tempted to think spring. but today/tonight another snow storm is supposed to roll in.
    there isn’t any chance you are going to make it to coons’ wedding is there?
    ma timilaai samjhindai chhu, mero saathi.
    lizzie

  4. Faye Yu

    glad your feeling better. Sure you don’t have any two cents to add to my discernment process.

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