Game Tilt

Before the crash.
Before the crash.

I set myself up in the reception area this morning, determined to get through all my pending financial work (updating an Excel sheet with all our expenses) as well as Livejournal reading.

A little before lunch time, my MacBook laptop crashed. Attempts to reboot on the safe mode failed. The green, pixelated screen, according to Mac forums perused via my iPhone, inform that I probably lost my graphs board.


The nearest Mac technician is 3 hours away in São Paulo.



Our town's mayor lost her husband yesterday to Covid. He had been under an induced coma for a few weeks, intubated. The rumours say that he suffered brain death some days ago but the family were resistant to turning off the machines.

Sadly, this man had been offered a vaccine some months ago but chose not to take it. He even had to sign a document stating that he had been offered the vaccine but declined. I don't know if he was a Bolsonaro supporter or not, if his choice was political or out of fear, but I think we can all agree that his chances would have been better if he had said yes.

He was the town's mayor two decades ago (some even say he was still the mayor, though his wife officially held the title). He was good to my mother when she set up the pousada back in the day, always offering to help with anything she needed - tractors, earth, etc.

I still haven't received my first shot. They are currently vaccinating those who are 49 years old - so my time is close. My birthday is at the end of September and in an ideal world, I would be able to travel to São Paulo and spend a few days with friends, celebrating it together.

Boycott List's Debut

We have a saying in Brasil's hospitality business: “there are certain guests best left to the competition.”

Today, for the first time in my burgeoning career as a pousada manager, I lost my temper with a guest and fully understood that saying. All because of a tiny dog.

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Chicken Run (from me)

I ate some chicken yesterday from my mother’s takeaway. A piece of chicken a la parmegiana. The last time I’d eaten chicken was back in November 2016, just before I went vegetarian.

I was never, though, truly vegetarian. I ate fish. I love fish. But I wasn’t eating fish all day. And instead of finding suitable sources of protein to replace it, I was more and more relying on bread.

Since I returned to Brasil, in August 2019, I’ve lost 10 pounds. This was due to a combination of things: grief, a change in daily routine (I became a gardener) and being on an old lady’s diet for the first six months (my mom’s). Most of these pounds were muscle (while in London, I’d built myself up to do 10 pull ups in a row; now I can only do about 5/6). I want my muscles back, I want to shed the bread and butter, but I’m still struggling to build up a good high vegetable protein diet.

So yesterday I took a bite of that chicken. And I thought to myself: well, I wasn’t really a vegetarian anyway. And this chicken is proper free range and not like one of those European ones that goes around inside a little cage, underneath a barn’s dome. And maybe I can have chicken only once in a while, when I need the protein, but still keep it as Plan B.

I’ve also been making whey protein vitamin shakes at night, mixing in peanut butter, melons, papayas, bananas and milk. It helps me get through the night without waking up with a growling stomach.

Optimum LJ Reading Time

About to read LJ.
About to read LJ.

I’ve discovered the best place and time to catch up on LJ: mornings when I’m sitting in the kitchen, waiting for guests to arrive for breakfast!

Perhaps not the best time to catch up on everything, but if I can read a little here, a little there, I’ll always be up to speed with you lot.

Happy Sunday. 🌿❤️


The Friday Five: Favourite Memories

Via thefridayfive

1. What was your favorite past time in high school?
During my freshman and sophmore years, computer games. During my junior and senior years, hang out with friends after school.

2. What is your all time favorite board game/card game?
Escape from Atlantis. I regret giving it to one of my young cousins when I went off to Uni.

3. What is the last movie you saw at the theatre and what did you think of it?
Star Wars: the Rise of Skywalker. I spent the whole movie necking a young man I met on a dating app so cannot comment what the movie is about.

4. What is something (no matter what kind of mood you're in) that makes you happy the moment you do it, see it, or hear it?
My all time favourite song, "White Love" by One Dove. I used to love starting my runs in Victoria Park with it, back when I lived in London. Nowadays, I'll listen to it after lunch, when I'm about to take a nap - it always puts me in a nice mood.

5. Do you believe that crop circles are made by human or alien?
I don't know enough about the phenomenon, but the impression I get is that many are made by humans and many are unexplained and cannot have been done by humans. So maybe a bit of both?

Delete All

Yesterday, after 16 years of use, I deleted my personal Facebook account. (And by delete I mean, I removed all friends and groups, leaving it only as an admin account for my pousada's FB page.) If I didn't have a guesthouse with so many fans on Facebook, I'd permanenly delete everything. But I have to be realistic, and so the best I can do - for now - is to remove the app from my phone, the shortcut from my browser, and only use the site for work purposes.

I also deleted my Tumblr blog, my writings on Wattpad, my Feedly and Snapchat accounts. And all dating and hook up apps.

I didn't feel anything - no weight lifted, no great shift. It was just something to do, and a truth to recognise that these sites no longer served me and merely held traces of my digital presence. I felt slightly uneasy later about not feeling anything.

Today, I'm reflecting on Livejournal and if I honestly still wish to use this site. As I write this, I can see shortcuts to YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and Goodreads on the browser's tabs. A part of me fears I'll be completely isolated - more so than I already am - if I no longer have any social networks.

And don't get me started on WhatsApp...


Three pieces of wood stand by the staircase that leads up to the pousada’s main house. Once upon a time, you could hang hammocks from them. The guests, and even myself, loved to spend afternoons on them, napping or reading.

They have rotted with time and need to be pulled out and replaced. Their replacements already lie in wait, just waiting for us to find someone in this town who can do the job. Once they are up, we’ll varnish the wood to protect it from rain and drill new hooks for the hammocks.