In honor of International Day of Peace, I’m so thrilled to introduce one of my favorite authors: From Nuremberg, Germany, Edith Parzefall! Her latest novel STRAYS OF RIO is released today. Today, Edith is here to guest blog about her time in Rio de Janeiro, the setting of her latest release, STRAYS OF RIO! Welcome Edith!
Today, on the International Day of Peace, my novel Strays of Rio is published. The thriller genre I chose for Strays of Rio made it difficult to show much of the kind, fun-loving, life-embracing and caring nature of Brazilians.
Now I want to thank the wonderful people, who watched out and cared for me and my companion. A stall owner on the beach ran after us when I accidentally paid double the price for our food and walked away. A man on the street made sure we got on the right bus. A boy chased us down when my friend forgot her shoes in the sand of a beach restaurant. He didn’t even wait long enough for us to give him some money.
When I booked a Rio city tour in advance, the lady who organized it asked where to pick us up. I gave her the name and address of the hostel. A few days later she sent me an e-mail telling me she’d taken a detour on her way to work to check out the place, but the hostel looked abandoned. I tried to call them to no avail. My e-mails went unanswered.
Just in time, we were able to book a lovely quaint hotel in Bairro Peixoto. If this lady hadn’t cared so much, we’d have ended up hauling our suitcases through Rio de Janeiro in search of accommodation. This might have provided some interesting experiences for the novel, but one shouldn’t be too greedy. Come to think of it, Cariocas would likely have immediately taken the two lost gringas under their protective wings.
People never tried to rip us off, quite the contrary. They cared for our well-being and safety. At the hotel, my friend lost fifty Reais in the lounge area of the small lobby. Five minutes after we’d retreated to our room, the concierge called because he’d found the bills on the sofa where we’d been sitting.
As it turned out, the most striking experience for me was how amazingly helpful Brazilians are and how happy to talk to interested strangers, particularly our guide, who took us through favela Rocinha, with the approval of the local drug gang. He showed us the community school and introduced us to the headmistress and an American living and teaching English in the favela. Thank you all!
I hope the International Day of Peace will not only bring me joy over the
release of Strays of Rio, but create cease-fires all over the world and foster
sustainable peace on many levels. My heart and mind are in Rio de Janeiro
today, where the war over drugs and power still rages.
US link to purchase STRAYS OF RIO