Monday, May 13, 2013

Weekend Recap

Friday we had a case team event scheduled at the partner's house in Riviera de São Lourenço, on the coast of São Paulo state.

Surprise #1: The landscape of São Paulo is quite beautiful, dominated by verdant mountain ranges outside the city. A surprise because the 10 million-strong city (and the doubly populous metropolitan area) is dominated by concrete towers. After we drove past the city, the suburbs (still concrete towers), the favelas, and some surrounding pastureland, the drive was almost as picturesque as the destination itself.

But still, only almost:

Surprise #2: A churrasco (which translates to 'barbeque' and was the highlight of the trip) is not the feeding frenzy I expected. As a team member described, the primary offering is caipirinha. There happens to be some (very good) grilled meats and cheeses which come out in small portions over the course of several hours, just enough to keep you from getting hungry without soaking up the cachaça.

(Non-) surprise #3: Where there are Brazilians colleagues and anything larger than a conference room's worth of space:

(Non-) surprise #4: Not even fair how beautiful the sunsets are here:

Saturday, back in the city:

Surprise #5: Even the concrete jungle is beautiful once you're high up enough. Based on a recommendation, tried to get to the observation deck of the Banespa building, originally built to house the headquarters of the Bank of the State of São Paulo. Found out it's not open on Saturdays, so I headed to the nearby Edifício Itália for the following view:

Surprise #6: Livraria Cultura. It's the largest bookstore in Brazil and basically a city for nerds. A giant bookstore/art/cultural complex on Avenida Paulista, with separate shops for Companhia de Letras authors, art books, music, foreign books, hobbies, research, special interests, etc. Here's a photo of one of the many shops:

Surprises #7/8/9: Feira de mau gosto. Jogos e desafios internacionais. Feira de bom gosto e dois mapas para adicionar à coleção, graças a Fodo!

Back to Rio!