When something goes wrong in Brazil’s Amazon, just blame it on Saci.
At least that’s what the locals along the Rio Negro do.
You stepped on a nail?
It was Saci that put it there.
Lost your wallet?
It was Saci that took it.
You can’t find something?
Saci hid it from you.
A young girl in the village got pregnant by mysterious man in a top hat?
Saci…well, actually that one is usually blamed on a boto…
For everything else however, blame it on Saci.
Saci (pronounced saˈsi), according to the locals, is a one-legged youngster of mixed blood with holes in the palm of his hands. He smokes a pipe and wears a red hat that gives him the power of teleportation and invisibility. It also allows him to turn into a dust devil.
Again, that’s with the locals tell me.
They also tell me that Saci’s red hat smells really, really horrible. When Saci turns invisible his hat and the glow of his piper remain visible. Saci can also turn himself into a bird known as the Matitaperê or Matita Pereira.
Saci’s not a mean person-elf-thing-whatever-the-hell-he-is. He just enjoys tormenting folks via annoying pranks.
As magic and elusive as he is, Saci can still be caught in a multitude of ways. Throwing a rosary at him just as he turns into a dust devil will do the trick. You can also capture him by dropping a knotted rope at his feet. Saci become so transfixed by the knots that he must stop to untie them. When he does is a good time to jump him.
Throwing him in a bottle and plugging it with a cross-marked cork will also do the trick as will relieving him of his red hat which renders him powerless.
But, again, his hat is said to stink really bad.
Capturing Saci might get you a wish or two or it might cause him to curse you so try catching him at your own risk.
I think I’ll let him be.
I have no need for a one-legged man with holes in his hands even if he does possess magic powers.
I’ll stick to fishing for Peacock Bass.
That’s a lot more fun.
I know this because I know Amazônia.
I’m Capt Peacock.
A vida é melhor vivida na Amazônia.