Destination São Luís, capital of the state of Maranhão.
Images of the bus travel from Belo Horizonte to São Luís and Barreirinhas, hour by hour. Part three.
Below, the third series of five, showing the bus travel from Belo Horizonte to São Luís, via Barreirinhas. A travel of 2700 kilometers that took two full days. Each major image shows one hour. The smaller images were taken within a period of 10 minutes each.
After having reached Feira de Santana, ‘close’ to the East-Bahian coast, the route was continued through Northwest Bahia, through Southwest Pernambuco, straight through Piauí, to Maranhão, our final destination. There was a fast shift from daylight to darkness, but we were able to witness a breathtaking sunset. A colorful sunset. Then the stars appeared at the darkening sky. Thanks to the lack of air and light pollution, we were able to observe countless stars that made the sky grey.
During the twelve hours of darkness, the bus progressed through Bahia, Pernambuco, and Piauí. At 7 AM, we arrived in Teresina, capital of the state of Piauí. Teresina has the reputation to be one of the hottest locations in Brazil. regularly, the temperature exceeds forty degrees. Some Brazilian friends already joked with me that I should move to Teresina, because of my preference for hot weather. For me, there was only a very short opportunity to discover whether I could consider to move to Teresina. It was still very early in the morning, it was still about 20, 25 degrees. The urubus (black vultures) lazily stretched their giant wings lazily. At day, these prey birds would hover through the thermal currents, for many hours, in search of their prey. The latter picture, right below, shows a silent witness of a sad moment. The simple cross does not need further explanation…
Following Piauí, Maranhão was the second Brazilian state during this travel that I never had visited before. Thus far I had visited the following states in thirty months time: São Paulo, Minas Gerais, Bahia, Sergipe, Alagoas, Pernambuco, Paraná, Espírito Santo, Rio de Janeiro, Santa Catarina, and now followed by Piauí and Maranhão. Twelve of 27 Brazilian states and district in total. By far most Brazilian students have visited only a fistful states in their young lives. They regularly asked me what countries in the world I already had visited. My answer is then: The Netherlands, Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, United Kingdom, Australia (with stopovers in Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Singapore, and Cyprus), Luxembourg, Portugal, Italy, the United States, Mexico, Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina.
Timon is located in Maranhão, close to the border with Piauí. It forms a kind of a twin city with Teresina. We had a stop in Timon for our breakfast. Some companions took the opportunity to take a shower. I did not, since the showers were not that clean. Even when I, like all of us, was in need of a refreshing shower. But I preferred to wait until we had reached our destination late in the afternoon, at night. The image right below shows a collection of cans and pans. They were quite expensive.
We had arrived in the much poorer Northeast. That was clearly visible when observing the housing. Little houses made of branches and mud, instead of bricks. Palm leaves that covered the roof. The other side of Brazil. The environment is a mixture of forests that are classified as Atlantic type as well as Amazon type. We had arrived at the edge of the immense Amazon forest, even when we were still more than one thousand kilometers away from the ‘real’ rain forest, in the neighboring state of Pará. The sun shone brightly, there were few clouds visible. The temperature increased quickly, soon all sliding windows were fully opened.
The bus travel is described in the following episodes:
By Dr. Adriano Antoine Robbesom
Original text in Dutch, translation with help of Google Translator