From special correspondent Cassandra Kennedy, on location in Brazil:
All is fab here. I managed to get hammered and make tons of friends within 4 hours of arriving. Gotta love it! The corner bar (site of this initial revelry) just happens to be a little hangout for hookers very late at night when (their) business is slow. Sounds dodgy but they are pretty cool.
They have an ``interesting`` outlook on life as you can imagine. So I just had to pop in and relay this little tidbit - I thought you´d get a kick out of it. I was chatting with this hooker (Esmerelda) and 2 guys - all were from the Brazilian countryside and bitching about how violent it is here and how they´re sick of it in Rio. She pulls her shirt down and shows me this scar on her boob and says it was from getting stabbed during a mugging. Oi! I said it´s really violent where I live, too - in some areas. She asked if I knew where Philadelphia was and I said I lived pretty nearby.
Then she freaked out and was telling the guys in Portuguese ``oh my god - you guys would not believe Philadelphia life. It´s the only place worse than Rio. It´s like crazy shootings and super rough. The cops will just shoot you down, too. Wow! Wow!``
And then after that, it was like I had street cred with them. Too funny. None of them have ever been outside of Brazil but they have certainly heard all about Philly. Just thought you should know and be proud:)
I should say that our time here has not been crazy violent or dangerous - more like paradise! Miss you girls...
Editor's note: Clearly, Ms. Kennedy leads a far more interesting existence than most mortals.