My never-ending battle here in Rio de Janeiro is against mold. I guess you can't really call it a battle. It's more like mold is making me his bitch and I'm left salvaging what I can.
You see, Rio de Janeiro is like a petri dish in a nice warm incubator. Things grow like crazy! Mold, fugus, viruses, and acne flourish in this environment.
I don't care if you live in central air, a rare phenomenon in this city, because mold will find you. It will grow on your suede purse like it does on a fine French cheese. The only difference is the mold on the cheese makes it better while it just makes the purse look like a nasty science experiment gone bad.
My current standoff is over sippy cups. Of course I brought back these cool sippy cups for my toddler from the states. No leak, extra tight, fabulous cups are a glorious field full of unreachable creases. Mold has found a happy new home in these non-spill bad boys. This almost pisses me off more than my shoes! It's annoying to find mold on my shoes but I'm not going to lick them or anything. How in the hell am I supposed to non-leakingly water my child with a cup that is growing like an uncleaned fish tank.
But there are just some things you have to accept. If you don't regularly use something, it could mold. That still goes for a well lit and airy apartment. It totally gives me a new understanding into the Brazilians' tendency to have a full time maid bleaching the crap out of everything on a daily basis.
As for me, I have decided that my battle on mold is like my battle with ants. You seemly have "wins" but the little bastards still come back. I'm over it and I'm going to try to live in peace with the native organisms of my adopted country.
That is except for the sippy cups. I will scrub, soak, and scrape to my hearts content. Then again, that's less about battle and more about decreasing the nasty in my kid's life.