The beginning of this week brought us some much needed rest and soaking up the vitamin D!
Sunday morning we went up to old Olinda town for a look round the shops in daylight and breakfast out with Andy and Rose to a quaint hotel called Pousada do Ampora, full of character! It was a traditional Brazilian breakfast – meats, cheeses, fruit, coffee, eggs, tapioca and cake! Needless to say we did not need any lunch. The surroundings of us were so beautiful and peaceful – I would recommend the hotel to stay in if you ever find yourself in Olinda!
During this time we also visited Andy and Rose’s friends who own a shop in Olinda and are Sofia and Julia’s godparents. Dom and Heather spent some time in Brazil before deciding to move out to Olinda and begin their own social enterprise business. The shop is called Beeconomics and hosts their own brand called “Okira”. The idea behind their business is that the brand is eco friendly cosmetics using honey from Brazilian stingless bees. All the products use natural ingredients. Furthermore their business is designed to help the entire community by offering apprenticeship opportunities for those who have finished school and not likely to get offered jobs. This may be something that is very useful for some of the girls in ReVive as they grow up. The products are also all incredible – they smell amazing and look so professional! Their website is below if you would like to find out more:
Sunday afternoon we hopped in the combi with Andy, Rose and their little girls and drove down to Muro Alto – a popular holiday destination for Brazilians. We drove right through Recife which is just huge! We were driving for over an hour before we came to the end of the city, then we drove past dense rainforest which Andy informed me is an extension of the Amazon! Then, just as we were driving past the oil refinery, we burst a tyre.
This was a bit of a tense moment, but about 5 minutes later at the right time a helpful man who was on his way to tend to an accident saw us and helped us out. Rose, Abi and the girls went with him – there turned out to be no accident(!) – and we waited for the tow-truck. A particularly funny/hairy moment was when 4 of us, had to squeeze into 2 seats in the front of the tow-truck. Andy was practically on the driver’s knee and definitely on top of the gear stick, and I was sat on Rosy and Sophie’s knee squished against the front window. Rosy had her arms around me as a seat belt and held on tight (sorry mum!) As I have said before, there is no health and safety in Brazil! Thankfully we were all sorted out and back on the road again in no time. Of all the places to break down too we were on a well lit road and someone was there to help us. It could have been a lot more dangerous!
Once we got there, only an hour later than planned, Andy and Rose are fortunate to have a friend who lends them the beach house whenever it is free. We were the only people in the complex and the house was incredible! It was quite a shock for us to sleep with air con and without a mosquito net! The beach was beautiful and practically like paradise – the water was so clear and still – a natural lagoon. The time here was spent relaxing and catching up on sleep. It was great to spend more time with Andy and Rose and get to know them even better than we have done. This morning we also visited Porto de Galinhas which was a nice trip out. It translates as the “Port of Chickens” and refers to the slaves coming over to this port in cages. There are lots of chicken statues around the port all wearing different costumes. It’s a quirky little attribute, even if the reason behind it isn’t a good one. After buying lots of Havianas we went back to the beach house for a last minute spot of sunbathing! We stayed here until this afternoon when we sleepily travelled back! This evening we are off to Spettus – an all you can eat meat restaurant that has had nothing but the highest praise! Definitely looking forward to it!
It has been a lovely few days of rest and a real privilege to visit such a beautiful area. I definitely won’t forget it in a hurry!
Kelly was born in a very poor place and was not looked after by her family. Kelly was practically living on the streets – they didn’t even have beds. Kelly has two other sisters who her mum loves, but her mum told her that she did not love her and that she wasn’t her daughter. She was brought to another home, and then to the ReVive house, but sadly ran away from here to live with her aunty who is a prostitute. Kelly had a really bad time there. Kelly was brought back to the ReVive house.
Kelly is a quiet girl, lacking confidence (she won’t even look in a mirror) who has taken her time in warming to us and opening up to us. Rosy managed to have a very in depth conversation with her just this weekend. Kelly acknowledged that ReVive was the best place for her – the reason for this is that she feels loved here, and she has never felt that before. It’s conversations like this that stress the importance of the work of ReVive.
For those who pray:
- Thank God for a lovely rest and relaxing time away.
- Thank God for Andy and rose and all they do to make everyone feel so welcome and at home – making it the best experience possible for us.
- Thank god for a quick resolution to the burst tyre!
- Please pray for our final day here tomorrow and our journey home to go without a hitch.
- Please pray for Kelly and thank god that she feels loved here at ReVive. Please pray that she would come to know the deeper love of God and feel truly accepted in him. Please pray that she would grow in confidence and be more accepting of herself.