January 25, 2006

Electric Showers

Posted in Randumb at 7:14 pm by Iram

Here’s a segment of Craig’s blog of his travels in Brazil:

So anyhow, besides Luiz, views of America or wild animals, the thing that scares me the most in Brazil is the showers. Depending on where you are, sometimes there is hot water and sometimes there is not. Even in the nicest places, I have not found central hot water, but instead there is an electric apparatus that is part of your showerhead that heats the water. There are three settings for heat and a switch to choose. The first time I tried to change the temperature, I didn´t understand the words, so I was trying all the settings. Every time I switched it, I could see a flash of charge behind the plastic of the showerhead. A bit alarming, but hey, no harm, no foul. Recently, in one of the pousadas, I tried the same endeavor, as I like cold showers in this hot climate. This time I got a slight buzzing sensation, which turned into a stronger sensation, then pain. I got quite a shock before I realized what was happening. I looked at the shower head, and there were all kinds of wires hanging out (no plastic sheath on some of them). Holy smokes! I talked with my friends today, who laughed heartily at my stupid gringo ways. Apparently every brazilian knows not to touch the shower head after you are wet. I didn´t see any such directions, and at the normal 240V that they have here, wet or not, I´ll be letting the person in front of me decide my water temperature from now on.

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