Destination Maceió, second travel to the capital of the state of Alagoas.
Paripueira is located thirty km north of Maceió and is known for its quiet beaches. Best known beach is Sonho Verde, the Green Dream.
We had spent an unforgettable day at Maragogi beach yesterday. Today, we planned our trip to another beach, not too far from Maceió. We asked around what beach would be worth visiting. Vítor, our guide, tried in vain to convince us to participate in another organized travel. But when he discovered that we would change our minds, he advised us to go to Parapueira Beach. We followed his advice and instructions, and took the bus to downtown Maceió. We then took the bus to Barra Santo Antônio. We were thinking to visit Barra Santo Antônio first, and then visit Paripueira. We got out of the bus near Barra, and followed the directions of the bus driver. The little village appeared almost deserted; we should take a ferry boat to reach our destination. However, Richard wasn’t very eager to take a boat, and we therefore decided to return by bus and to get out in Paripueira.
The bus driver had troubles to hide his smirks when we entered the bus again. At Paripueira, we followed new directions of the bus driver. There were no large and clear signs that guide you to the beach, you therefore need to trust the information provided. The state of Alagoas badly need to invest a lot in infrastructure, signaling, and information services, in order to attract more tourists – and thus obtain more income. The lack of large groups of tourists attracts other tourists that prefer to enjoy the quietness and the beauty of nature. Paripueira is a little village with less than ten thousand inhabitants. The village appeared to be deserted: its people were at work, at home or at school. We appeared to be the only tourists that day.
It was about time to have lunch. We quickly found a simple restaurant, where the owner received us warmheartedly. We opted for a fish dish, which was served quite quickly. The fish was fresh and delicious. A DVD player showed the best performances of Brazilian popular music. The owner chatted with us, and soon discovered that Richard was visiting Brazil for the first time, and that I already had been in Brazil for more than five years. He asked me if I had become familiar with Brazilian music. I confirmed that, the music of that DVD was familiar to me. He showed a broad smile when I told him that I appreciated the music. He offered us fresh fruit juice for free. A large carafe of freshly squeezed local fruits. Some fruits weren’t familiar to me, and I never had observed them before in Belo Horizonte. We paid our bills and said goodbye to the friendly owner.
The beach was only a few hundred meters away. A clean beach, with only a few people walking, and some fishermen working. There was a newly constructed quay with stairs, as a kind of defense against the sometimes very capricious ocean. Further away from the village, the beach was very narrow. There, the sand strip was flanked by green rows of coconut trees. We walked northward; according to a bus passenger who chatted with us, this beach was called Sonho Verde, the Green Dream. The view on this beautiful beach was indeed as in a dream: green sunlit coconut trees, the almost white sand strip, the azure blue ocean. It is easy to imagine that in summer, during the dry period, an almost cloudless sky would added more to the illusionary image of a beach of your dreams. That day, the sky was heavily clouded; only in the afternoon, we could see some blue spots in the sky, from where sun rays warmed the beach and our faces. We walked on this beach, until the strip was blocked by natural rocks. A walk of about one hour.
We observed tiny holes in the sand. A bit larger than worm holes; they were holes dug by little crabs where they are hiding themselves. When walking along the beach, we regularly noticed quick and swift movements when crabs tried to escape from our view. They disappeared with their typical lateral movements. You can call it primitive or not, their action was very fast, and in only a few moments they were in their safe havens. They kept themselves quiet, until they no longer detect vibrations in the sand. We stood still for a while, careful not to cause any vibration and observed the holes. About five minutes later, they appeared again, and quickly returned when they noticed that it wasn’t safe yet.
Two neighboring holes in the sand
Almost all crabs showed identical behavior: a minimal movement caused them to run away. Therefore, it was obvious when we noticed one of them unmoved. Was this creature dead? We cautiously approached this pale yellow animal. I tried to turn it around with a light stick. Then its eyes were moving. I had to look again, since I had the idea that no less than four eyes were staring at me. Was this some weird creation of Mother Nature? More or less. It was a mating couple of crabs. With their bellies tightly attached to each other, apparently unmoved and with their four eyes staring constantly at us. We left the couple alone.
We also walked in southern direction. We enjoyed the beach, the crab life around us. The sun had appeared and shone us warmly. It was not very hot that day. Time ran fast, it was already late in the afternoon when we returned to the village. The students had returned from their schools and wandered in small groups along the streets. An ice cream saloon received many customers. The students all wore red and blue shirts, it was their school uniform. They were free to use jeans instead of uniform pants. Most schools demand comfortable sweatpants. They are worn by both boys and girls. We had to wait a while for the next bus; we therefore wandered around, to the central square where we noticed to statues. One of Padre Cicero and one of Pope John Paul II. The bus arrived at four-thirty, and we got out of the bus in downtown Maceió. We had much enjoyed our day at Paripueira.
Statue of pope John Paul II
Pictures taken on the way, between Maceió and Paripueira:
By Adriano Antoine Robbesom