torstai 19. tammikuuta 2012

January 18th 2012


12°46,113'S, 38°38,158'W

“One can explore Ilha do Frade ashore by following the paths into the vegetation to see the monkeys and bird life.”

Doesn't that sound wonderful! It is an extract from our cruising guide, and the very reason why we had gone to Ilha do Frade. What we hadn't taken into consideration was that since the publication date of the cruising guide, more than ten years ago, things had changed quite a bit. So, as we went ashore, looking forward to our very first nature walk in Brazil, a guard appeared out of nowhere and told us that the whole island was PRIVADO!, and that we had to leave. We of course protested strongly but that didn't help any. Rather upset, we then motored around the small, inhabited island of Bom Jesus, and when we came to the other side of the bay, we saw this sign on the shore of Ilha do Frade:

So, what was going on here?!

I love the Scandinavian Everyman's Right! The right to go walking, swimming, skiing, to pick flowers, berries, mushrooms … on someone's private land. No such signs as Keep Off!, No Trespassing!, Private Property! can keep us Scandinavians out since we have the legal right to trespass. And the same applies to anyone visiting Scandinavia. Of course, there are restrictions to this Right, e.g. that you are not allowed to enter the owner's yard uninvited or collect firewood from his forest without his consent but, otherwise, you are more or less free to go anywhere you want to. Thus, if the Island of Frade were located somewhere in Finland, no one could stop us from going ashore to see the monkeys (but then, there wouldn't be any monkeys there, of course)!

Now, having no apparent reason to prolong our visit, we weighed anchor early next morning and returned to Ilha de Itaparica, bitterly disappointed.

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