Hello all, i've been very lazy with my entries so i thought it was about time i gave you a little up-date. I am now in Natal, a fairly small city (well in comparison with Sao Paulo) on the Northeast coast of Brazil, just south of the equator, so incredibly hot! i arrived here on the 28th January, was greeted at the airport by my host family, Bia (my new sis-not as good as you Rosie though-OFCOURSE!!), Christina (mom) and Cooka (well thats what they call him, dont know what his real name is!) who is the stepdad/boyfriend of the mum. All very nice, but took a lot of getting used to. Bia speaks good english considering she's only 15, and the mum speaks fairly well although she doesn't talk a lot because she doesn't want to get the english wrong! and Cooka doesn't speak any english, well as much as I speak Portugese!-which I assure you, is still not a lot :S On the Saturday they took me to Cooka's parents house which is right on the beach front, in a kind of beach resort place, 20 or so minutes from the city of Natal. Although I had no idea where I was, or who's house it was, and we were there all weekend, so I got very homesick!! :( On the Sunday night we returned to my new house, which is an apartment block, which overlooks the sea, although it is a fair walk to the beach. An interesting point about the location of my apartment block is that when I arrived there, there appeared to be shacks around my house, and yes I soon found out that I live amongst a favella (slums!), so it's really fun walking back in the dark after work! The following days we were showed the buses we should get, and given some orientation about the city, and things we could get involved with, like Samba classes :)! although 2 weeks later we still haven't started! We visited a fort (which is famous for being in a star shape *!) which was thoroughly interesting-ahem! as the only translations were to say what was written above the doors in english anyway! It was a relief to be back with some english people, just to share our experiences of the weekend, all of us found it hard to start with, but it soon got a lot easier. I especially found it hard the reality that I wouldn't have my own room, am sleeping on the floor on a pull out bed, but it doesn't bother me at all now so that's just one example of the 'culture shock'!! i experienced! Anyways, I'll wrap this one up, and give you another update of the work I get involved with next time round..