Wednesday morning we headed towards the southern tip of Salvador, to the Federal University of Bahia, where I’d been told I would finally find the archives. And I did. It was the easiest thing. We walked in to the library – no one questioning whether or not we were students – and the room was just on the right, with John Russell-Wood’s name printed above the door. It was a large collection for one person, and the people there were clearly proud of it – showcasing his medals and a poster of his achievements alongside the stacks of books.
As we were strolling back along the quiet road to somewhere busier where we’d find a taxi we stumbled across what we initially thought was a house but turned out to be a low-key port kilo restaurant. At least we thought it was low-key. The doors opened just as we got there and we were one of the first to go in, but within twenty minutes the place was bustling and there was barely a seat spare on the shady patio. The buffet was simple, mostly overflowing piles of salads and meats, as well as freshly-cut fruits, but it was undoubtably the best food we’d had so far. I could see why people would navigate the quiet backstreets to have their lunch here.
That evening we finally had a seafood moqueca, the traditional Bahian curry dish. It arrived in a huge pan that was placed between Anna and I, and was then accompanied by rice, a mysterious curry-like paste and farofa. I immediately thought that we wouldn’t even get near to denting the piles of food in front of us, but it was delicious. Not long later, there was left only a few farofa crumbs and a small pool of the yellow-orange sauce left in the pan. We rolled home for an early night since we’d have to be up early the next day for the boat.