I realized yesterday that a lady who I swam with lived in Rio in the 70’s as I did. I discovered it quite by accident. She always swims in the same lane I do. She is a lady in her 60’s and often treads water. Her name is Cathy.
I over heard her discussing Rio de Janeiro and Brasil. I got curious and asked her if she had lived there. Sure enough, she had lived near the Corcovado from 1977 to 1980. Her husband had been a diver for an oil company. We had a lively conversation. We talked about the wonderful things in Rio and the sad things like the favelas, street robbers, the rough police (“I would rather have ten years in prison than one night in the police station”-an old Rio saying) and the DOPS. When we started to discuss Lord Jim’s Pub, a light went on in her brain. After 34-35 years she remembered me! I was touched.
Most interesting, I mentioned the point that our Rio experience showed us what it was like to live in a society where people are either upper middle class and wealthy or poor. She got very serious and told me that the US was going the same way. I agreed with her.