I’ve walked a while and not recorded anything; have I lost interest? having a bad day? Even the partial solution to my current impasse – film or photos – seems destined to perpetuate tired South American clichés.

I hope this is just a temporary state of mind, but it’s getting me down a bit today and I don’t like it; I can’t reconcile who I am or what I’m doing here with some of what’s around me. There are areas here rife with social rigor mortis, places where the limbs of hope and possibility have been hacked off by a blade gone rusty through grim circumstance. I picture the people living here – in the favelas and cortiços – staring out into a void of hopelessness as real and imagined barriers close down fast around them, restricting their choices, asphyxiating their freedoms, retracting their horizons, till all that’s left is a blank world fuelled by crime and violence and the agony of prolonged and endless poverty. And then me, walking sheepishly past it all. What a joke; but it’s not a joke, really it’s not. Today I feel like giving up.