Arriving at night I gaze my head upwards and see the stars and in the morning the sun rises through the slats at the bottom of my bed. I run downstairs hook up to the wifi and book the rest of my stay here.
The terrace shows I am in the middle of the favela. Hearing the sounds I follow my ear and peer down into the alley streets. On one side of my there is a 40ft drop into a courtyard and to the other is a yard a few feet away. Blue water storage buckets share the roof with Satellite dishes.
Laughter of children and parents sat around the plastic table and chairs come out to socialise. Parents and carers carry babies. Skips and tractors rev up the steep hills to continue building work higher up the hill. Kites wave around frantically from different spots, then get caught in the trees rising up to the conservation area at the top. Church bells, loud hailers, children’s samba practice ring. The sun disappears more people come out to recognise the day and the flickers of light from tv screens reflect off the stray cats.
Favelas have become a new angle on my research. I’m due to visit my first NGO who works with families in a favela 14 km North of Rio. It’s all very interesting the pacification and presence of the police and how that effects a thriving community.