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Pinheiros Street Life

Another, strange sound at 4:30 a.m. had me puzzled for a while. Not central heating pipes banging; don’t have any in my apartment block. Not sex; keeps coming back at intervals, but for too long. Got up to use the bathroom, saw the silhouette thrown by the security lights which explained it. Someone in my block gets up at 4 or so to exercise, in running gear, up and down the car parking area around the apartment block. Not in the uninviting streets, but running the length of two apartments, up and down. It’s their footsteps I hear, fading in and out. Even in the steady drizzle of Sao Paulo, Cidade de Garoa, as this morning. Dogs are walked on the streets by their maids, or on the weekends by their owners, but this human prefers to run a short circuit.

Woke at 4:00 a.m. but no more sleep was to be had … a compressor on a parked refrigerated truck, a couple having sex in an adjoining apartment, a baby crying, the chatty shift change for the porteiro, a neighbour in high heels, a police siren, the baby again, the truck driving off, a barking dog … and I live in a quiet part of town. I notice that it bothers me less than when I first arrived in Sao Paulo, but still … no, it’s rarely still.

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