HE WON HER WITH FISH
Love and Life as they happen in a Fishermen’s Village in Brazil
The way life keeps happening to Claire, an English woman, and Neu,- a Brazilian fisherman, in a remote fishing community in the north east is full of joy but also challenges;
Claire learned to live in the village more than a decade ago, she acquired the language and was able to send her children to the poorly managed local public school system and still make sure they get good education.
Neu, her man, tries to make a living for his new family, despite the overfishing.
Life in the village is full of local politics, Brazilian style corruption and nature’s invasion of sand and sea – the very concrete global warming in their community Prainha do Canto Verde in the state of Cearà.
Then, life did happen again, as Neu s previously undiagnosed kidney failure resulted in a few years of a newly invented dialysis at home. After an abdominal inflammation, being sent forth and back with nondescript diagnosis’s, he proceeded to hemo dialysis in the city. Due to the desolate Brazilian health system and of a mix up over exam results, he was taken on and off a kidney transplant list. Neu is in bad shape. Claire and him are now both desperately in need of a break with the only thing holding them together is their love for each other.
How it began in London 2000:
Claire and her first husband got together while they were still teenagers, 23 years later he met someone else and left the family home.
It was a painful time for them all and although Claire, once she'd recovered from the shock, felt she was better off, her concern was with their young children, aged 12, 7 & 4, who were angry, scared, confused and hurt.
Claire's teachers at Amazonas capoeira (Brazilian “martial art”, a form of fight / dance) announced a series of workshops to take place at the beginning of 2002 in Prainha do Canto Verde, a tranquil fishing community 120 km south of their native city of Fortaleza in the north-east of Brazil.
Wanting to give her children something bright to focus on for the future, Claire asked her children if she could find the money, would they like to go? Claire can still see their excited faces as they screamed "Yes Please!"
The threat and effects of predatory fishing and global warming:
The artisanal fishers of Brazil's north-east coast (of whom Neu is one) depend on the lobster season (June to December) to earn enough money to carry them through the rest of the year. In the past the men could earn a reasonable living from lobster, but sadly predatory fishing with the wide spread use of illegal fishing gear has brought about a serious decline in lobster catches. These "Pirate" fishers are often hired by big fishing companies and risk their lives diving in deep water with inadequate equipment, taking lobster by the hundreds from the sea floor, paying no heed to size or reproductive capacity, thus disrupting the ecological balance for years to come.
Nobody knows why exactly but in 2015 the lobsters simply disappeared and with them, the fishermans income. The causes could be: over fishing, El Nino induced local climate changes, increased water temperature and acidity, global warming, a combination of any of these, or none of them.
CKD, (chronical kidney failure) The silent killer :
Since Neu was diagnosed, they have been asked by numerous people how they discovered that Neu had kidney failure and what his symptoms were. The truth is that Neu didn’t really have any specific symptoms, just changes in personality and mood, leading Claire to wonder if he'd had enough of their marriage, he just wasn't the man she knew any more. That’s the trouble with kidney disease, symptoms often don’t appear until the person is in the advanced stage of the disease and this lack of symptoms has led chronic kidney disease (CKD) to be known as the Silent Killer.
It is thought that the cause of Neu's kidney failure was high blood pressure, aggravated by his extremely high salt diet. High blood pressure creates a vicious cycle of lowered kidney function, leading to higher blood pressure, leading to lowered kidney function and is one of the biggest causes of CKD world wide.