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Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Three short years ago yesterday, Cappuccino came into our lives. She was named as such prior to her arrival, prior to knowing her eventual name or gender. The name was given to her by our dear friend, Professor Costela, seeing that our creation would be a beautiful blend of espresso and milk. Plus the irony that my husband, CM Neguinho and I both have an affinity for the Italian specialty coffee drink. (I will share the birthstory and pregnancy whilst training story later.) For now I would like to share this wondrous moment of little Cappuccino at the Roda de Vadiacao in downtown Greenville, SC.

As the roda began to wind down, sun was still high, air crisp, the last day of her second revolution around the sun, Cappuccino expertly knelt down into a deep cocorinha. The music had changed to “Parabens” and I asked one of the children to join her, already sensing her refusal to play with anyone over a meter and half tall, a.k.a. adults. Imagine the immense wave of overwhelming joy and pride, nossa princesa, agachado no pe de berimbau awaiting her father to allow them to enter the roda. The berimbau lowered between the pair signaling them permission to enter. Cappuccino looked at her friend Minhoquinha, they touched palms and she entered with an au fechado while Minhoquinha added a palhaco to his au agulha. A tiny swirl of rainbow tutu flashed as she went upside and began to move, deftly accentuating her little meia lua de frentes, followed by a bencao, esquivas and the ginga. Even though this is not the first time she has played capoeira, I was still awestruck. Cappuccino was totally engaged in the game and seemingly enjoying her self, courageously countering Minhoquinha’s kicks and crazy acrobatics. The crowd that had gathered around was applauding and cheering. Many of them with cameras extended forward, recording the roda. I took a moment to steel my eyes away from the game to see if anyone in our party was recording this moment and no, they weren’t. I rushed over to grab my phone and caught the last two games. One with Cobrinha, where I guided him to do the chamada/cabecada sequence with her and another with Pandinha. Instinctively knowing it would be an attempt made in vain, I bought the game to play with her and she predictably flat out refused.  Heart broken… haha, oh well, at least she has enough conviction to say no and mean it. At some point between Minhoquinha and Cobrinha, Cappuccino had grabbed one of the birthday Finding Dory blowers and played with that, blowing it as she did ginga. Roda etiquette or not, birthdays give one special license to be silly.

Truth is, at every event- if there are children her size, Cappuccino engages them to play without any prompting from adults. Leo of CM Ligeirinho and Instrutora Rhea- Gingarte Chicago is one of her favorites. And while the games were not to rival Cirque Soleil in terms of difficult moves,  it was still a great exchange of movement between players and that was brilliant. Our little star shone even brighter. No pressure, but I can’t wait to see how her capoeira continues to grow. She has lots of great examples in her life, like good friend tia Professora India’s son, Instrutor Tubarao of UCA Miami. I do hope her love of the art continues to flourish in the same way.

Parabens Cappuccino, te amamos.

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