Tuesday, April 23, 2013

O Gigante São Paulo

Another plane ride of about 5 hours and a slightly less crazy taxi ride later
we had made it to São Paulo

This time we were staying in a hostel...
The São Paulo Global Hostel
It wasn't exactly what we were expecting,
but I thought it was great!
Just what I was looking for in this trip.
I didn't come to South America to live the luxury life and be more comfortable than I am at home...
I came to South America to experience the culture and live life a little differently,
however that might be. 
It was perfect!

Here is the white board with the code for the door to get in... 
Here are the boys in their bunk beds
It was actually a really cute building 

Day one in São Paulo

First thing the we did in the morning
was walk down to the nearest shop for breakfast. 
A lot of the eateries there are also grocery stores. 
It's sort of fun to have everything in one place.

Pastries with Goiabada (guava paste)!! Best ever!! Except for the amazing coconut thing next to them!
Passion Fruit and Acai Juice!! Yummy!
Avocado smoothie. I could die!! So delicious!!
First of many!
After walking around the city for a bit
we found a really cool park,
full of giant SPIDERS!!!

Not kidding when I say giant!
They were terrifying. 
At first, we thought we had just found one crazy spider...
and then we realized 
the entire park was full of them!
It was like a park version of the barn in Arachnophobia!

The thumb was supposed to help give some perspective but we were all too scared to get that close. Ha! 

We stopped in the Exhibition Olympic Games in the FIESP cultural center.
First time to come to Brazil. 

I honestly enjoyed this museum. 
I learned a lot of really fun things. 

Just Der and I fighting over first place... and Carl chuckling at us in shame. Pretty ordinary. 

Brazil's version of a hot dog.
Mashed potatoes and string fries on top
That poor little pup sticking his head out
just wanted come out and play so bad. 

My first time seeing a Black Swan!

Oh Carl, ... this pic never gets old.
- I have repeatedly told Carl how sexy I think this picture is of him.
Don't worry... It's okay! I ran it by Derek first. He agrees! :) 
Yes, we are still children at the playground

Busy city

We finally headed back to our place,
changed into something a little warmer,
and went out for dinner. 

Yes, the sweaty look is "in" in Brazil... :)
Don't judge me.. it's HUMID
Walked home to our awesome patio
and played lots and lots of Gin Rummy.
Our game of the trip!

You can tell how serious we are about our Gin Rummy, by the stealthily faces... 

Day 2 in São Paulo

We woke up to an awesome street market right outside our place!!
You know my love for markets!! I was so HAPPY.

Passion fruit, watermelon, Brazilian candy, and Pastels (Chocolate, Goiabada) in hand,
we headed out toward the city. 

First stop: Centro Cultural São Paulo

Second stop: Catedral da Sé de São Paulo 
which is the Cathedral of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of São Paulo

Then we walked around the Cathedral Square which is often referred to as the historical City Center.

One of the strangest things about Sao Paulo is how it can feel like you are in the ghetto, even when you are right near a new, gorgeous building. It's like there is no separation of class, like we certainly have in the states. 

Lunch time, we wandered into the Mercado Municipal de São Paulo. 
A very large, indoor market. 
I looooove markets!!! So much fun! 

Love all the bulk foods!
Duff!! Just like in The Simpsons! Jensen's had to get a picture... they are Simpson freaks. :)
Cashew fruit.
Yes, that is a whole piece of fruit that only yields one lousy cashew!
No wonder they are so expensive. 
Goiabada! Minas Cheese! Banana candy!
You are supposed to eat the cheese and goiabada
together. They call it Romeo & Juliet.
( Sorry for the picture mishap)
Derek walked into every market
 in the city looking for these peanut things.
Luckily he found them, because otherwise, I think we
may have gotten to finally see "real" tears
out of those eyes!
Sadly, the three market items above never got to be enjoyed. 
We accidentally left them on a bus. 

Third Stop: Banespa Skyscraper Rooftop (I think)

The view from the top of this building is a major destination. 
It's not hard to see why. 
Literally, sky scrapers for miles and miles.....
I have never seen anything like it in my life. 
From every single angle you could image,
all you can see are buildings and more buildings. 
And a little bit overwhelming. 

Panorama cannot even capture the enormity of this city

Every photo to follow
 is from an entirely different angle. 
Probably even an entirely separate side of the building.

Walking around a city this size can get a bit exhausting

This building was fascinating to me. Sort of beautiful in it's brokenness.
It was like a lone, standing favela.
No windows,
 just colorful cardboard boxes and sheets dividing each home. 

On our way back to find a taxi,
we ran into a really neat park.

I think those are figs

Carl loved his giant leaf. Jamie found it less amusing


This was like a 6 story escalator.
 Pretty crazy looking as you are going down. 

Probably one of the craziest parts of the day
was when we walked block after block,
blindly into the dark, night
looking for a Churrascaria (Brazilian Steakhouse)
We kept asking where the nearest one was, and people kept sending us different ways. 

"It's two blocks ahead! You're almost there!"
"Oh Yes, yes!! It's 4 and half blocks up and 1 over!" 
"UUH, Yes, I think it is just around the corner, you can't miss it."
"Oh, no no, you need to turn around, it is one block back!"

And on and on.... 
We would have given up but Derek was having so much fun talking to the locals
we just kept listening to their crazy directions. 
Funniest thing about Brazilians...
They never actually know where the place is but they never fail to give you lengthy directions. 
Ha! Pretty funny and very kind...
But not helpful at all!

Needless to say...
We found it!... or one. 
We will never know if we were ever actually getting directions to this one, or any Churrascaria for that matter.

Carl doesn't mess around when it comes to good meat.
He was still puttin' it down long after the rest of us were in solid food comas.
Although he may be skilled in eating meat, he is still not immune to the meat sweats.
So worth the journey!
That was our last night in Sao Paulo.

The next morning we took a long bus ride to Rio.
It was sort of a fun ride.
They gave us cute snacks and a mini Guarana when we arrived,
and we got to stop at a really cool rest stop area and have lunch.
Basically just a bunch of random items to choose from.

Passion Fruit Fanta!! Yum!
The bus was comfy and easy to sleep on,
plus they had a movie in for us to watch. 

Next stop.... Rio De Janeiro!

April 23rd

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