25-Aug-2004 -- We left Santa Maria with the objective of visiting the confluences on the parallels 32ºS and 33ºS, the most southern ones of Brazil.
The first one chosen was 32ºS 53ºW, next to Conde Matarazzo, a small village where a few inhabitants coexist with the ruins of an abandoned limestone plant.
In the way, our attention was taken by an enormous centennial fig tree that spread its shade over the road. We stopped to appreciate the tree and we noticed a movement in the farm in front that contrasted with the deserted aspect of the region.
A procession of traditionalistic "gauchos" was taking a flame like the Olympic Torch, called "The Creole Flame". This flame travels throughout the state of Rio Grande do Sul before the "Farroupilha Week", a period which recalls the history of the most important revolution which occurred in Rio Grande do Sul, paying homage to its heroes and their feats. Considered the biggest popular event in the State, the "Farroupilha Week" is celebrated by thousands of people annually.
One of the heroes honoured is our great great great grandfather, general Bento Gonçalves da Silva.