Sunday, April 8, 2012

Feliz Pascoa / Happy Easter

08 April 2012

This morning I accidentally set my alarm an hour earlier than I needed to get up to go to Mass.  The nearly full moon was still in the sky and I couldn't resist going out and trying to photograph it again, along with the garden.

This is a puny little tree no taller than me, but it has managed to grow one pomegranate, like Charlie Brown's Christmas tree.
 I don't really like persimmons, but they are so beautiful.  This was somewhat mitigated by the fact that a bird was sitting above me and pooped on my camera when I took this photo.
 The garden at dawn in early autumn.
After the Easter mass at the cathedral.
Having never been to a Catholic Mass, it was an interesting experience.  In some ways it was as expected and other ways not.  The church was absolutely full, and the service began with a processional - incense, robes and all.  The incongruous note was that under the formal robes, all the little boys were wearing athletic sneakers. There was a lot of waving around of the incense thingy on the chain by a boy about 12 years old.  I am not sure what the purpose of it was, as it seemed to happen at quite random intervals and locations during the service. Due to the speakers echoing off the vaulted ceilings and my limited Portuguese, I didn't understand very much of what was said. The choir, although rather small, was quite good.  Of course someone's cell phone had to ring right in the middle of the service, right in the middle of the congregation.  The service was shorter than I thought a Catholic Mass would be, but quite nice and dignified.  It gave me a bit of a frisson to hear everyone speaking the parts in unison. I didn't take communion as I am not Catholic, but given that the church was full, it went very quickly.  Come the end of the service there was quite a crush as everyone shuffled sedately toward the exit.

The church bells are ringing again now as I type.

 Mmmmm, coffee at Quiosque.  We sat chatting over coffee and each had a second cup.
Afterward, my friend invited me to join her family for lunch - not a formal Easter dinner but a simple and delicious family meal of potato salad (with real homemade mayonnaise) and galinhada (Brazilian style chicken and rice).  Perfect day!

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