Brazil at First Glance

I’ve been in São Paulo since this Wednesday, June 11th, and it’s been awesome so far. I arrived around 9:40am and ran off the plane to get as far ahead in the customs line as possible. It was pretty effective because I only had to wait 3 minutes as opposed to 30-45 minutes. Waiting for my baggage was a nerve-wracking experience given my terrible luck on the flight back to Cali from Boston (some rando guy took my biggest luggage mistaking it for his, ugh). But after about 20 minutes, my big ol’ luggage came swerving out onto the belt and I grabbed it as if my life depended on it. Driving from Guarulhos back into the city with Mô and her dad was interesting because the first thing I asked about was the thick fog I had seen from the sky when the plane was landing. Mô quickly responded, “Oh, that’s not fog, that’s pollution.” I was shocked–and a bit horrified–to be completely frank. I know that the USA is one of the most resource-guzzling countries out there, but from bare eye’s view you still cannot see the negative effects as clearly as here in São Paulo. I also think that having lived in New Zealand last year (a country that fiercely expresses and enforces green environmental policies) gave me even more of a shock. Similar to NZ though, Brazil gives one the feeling of being thrown back in time a bit. The streets, buildings, cars, and overall general infrastructure look aged and concrete. The plants, flora and fauna are that of a mild rainforest climate, and although it’s winter right now, I’ve been wearing shorts and flowy skirts these past few days.

I’ve been staying with Mô in Moema at her fantastic apartment (no really, it’s beautiful), and some of the activities we’ve done so far have been getting lunch at this super yummy and affordable (only $15 Reais/$7.50US) buffet restaurant, trying açaí with banana and granola (after which we got stranded at the Frutaria cause it started pouring torrential rain), and shopping at Shopping Vila Olímpia (malls are called “shopping” here). Today we drove to Rua Oscar Freire, which I kind of describe as the Newbury Street or Santana Row of São Paulo because there are a plethora of cool shops and restaurants on the main and off streets. We ate at an Italian restaurant called Serafina and I ended up liking Mô’s pasta dish way more than my own, lol.  The most exciting part of lunch was when we saw the most beautiful man sitting a table away from us. He literally looked like he stepped off the page of a Armani Exchange ad. His hair had that sexy tousled look going on and his navy blue dress shirt was perfectly unbuttoned 2 buttons down. I can now proudly say I’ve seen with my own eyes one of the magnificent creatures that is the sexy Brazilian man.

How long did it take you to notice the bandaid?

Tonight we are getting dinner at Bráz Pizzaria Bar do Juarez and then heading to the cinemas to watch The Great Gatsby with Mô and her boyfriend’s posse. I’m loving Brazil so far and can’t wait to visit Santos, Campos, Museu do Ipiranga, and other places in the next week. In the meantime, I’ll start taking more photos and posting ’em so this blog looks more interesting! Tchau e beijos 😉

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