Well we finally arrived in Belo Horizonte, 2 1/2hrs later than our scheduled time, and 5 1/2hrs later than the planned time.
During our journey we travelled through fog so thick we could hardly see the other side of the road, something that proved fatal for a truck and bus which collided in the obscurity. We passed them and some cars that had also hit them while it was still very hard to see. What we did see however, was the bus hanging over the edge of the road pointing down a super steep hill and looking extremely precarious. The authorities had arrived by now and all people were removed from the scene so I am not sure of the severity.
Moving onward, our journey became somewhat monotonous with the occasional stop at a roadhouse dedicated for buses every now and then. There was any supplied videos on the bus, but a man travelling from Ciudad del Este was carrying dozens of DVDs (mostly fakes from what I saw) and we had the privilege of some movie entertainment on the way which helped pass the time. The most interesting however was a Rodeo video with all of the cowboys bouncing around on the back of the bulls and dozens of shots of them falling off. Hmmm, perhaps I am a masochist. 🙂
After stopping in Sao Paulo, we continued north but only for a short time. Suddenly a police vehicle pulled alongside of our bus and indicated for us to stop. Having just overtaken some trucks, I suspected that our driver was in trouble for speeding, but this opinion soon changed when the officers climbed aboard and started inspecting our bags. Before long, we were all out on the roadside, standing by watching as each bag was meticulously inspected, even to the point of cutting through the bag when they could not seen down deep.
Forty minutes later and we are back on our way, finally arriving in Belo at 10.30pm, about an hour after the other YWAM team from Buenos Aires who took another bus which left at the same time as us. It was 1am before we finally climbed aboard the shuttle bus to head to the YWAM base in Contagem and to our beds.
Initially we were expecting our beds to be nice and comfortable, but on climbing into the bus we are told that at this time of night everything is now closed up and there is nowhere for us to stay. So instead, they lead us into the base and provide us with the only section of level space available… the main auditorium stage. Here we sleep the night, finally resting sometime around 2.30am, only to wake at 6am to make way for all of the preparation for the day.
Welcome to the Viva Latina-America conference in Belo Horizonte.