Drought refugees. Jose Quirino de Lima, Maria Alzenita Claudino dos Santos and their 9 children ask for a ride by the BR-428 highway trying to get at southeast Brazil. Jose is unemployed and his children do not attend school. What is referred to as formal employment simply does not exist in the rural zone of Northeastern Brazil. People try to make a living on small clearings. If there´s no water, there´s not going to be any crop, nor any earnings. An inexpensive army of unskilled labor force is formed to serve the economic system and inhabit the slums of the large metropolises.