São Paulo

ihana.com - big trip - diary - brasil - december 2002

 

Spices

Crowded shopping around Ave 25 Marco

Miracle herbal drink

Sunday 1 - Wednesday 4 December

On Sunday we landied to Japan - a whole area of the city where the signs and most of the people are Japanese. The market was quite interesting with stalls selling traditional paper lanterns, fish and lots of rice based food.

Market in the Japanese quarter

Plenty of battling kids...

...and fish in plaggy bags

Novel variation on a theme

Plaggy animals

More kids

Sao Paulo is one of the biggest cities in the world, covering an area three times the size of Paris and fast approaching a population of 25 million yet we found it to be a relaxed and friendly place - right bang in the downtown markets the atmosphere is friendly and theres no worries at all - just cheap shopping and a lot less begging children than in Rio. Traffic is busy, same as any big city and the one way system is a bit frustrating. The population of Brasil has doubled in the last 30 years, an extra 20 million people in SP alone. Tower blocks are everywhere and plenty are still being put up, behind our apartment were the remnants of a row of terraced houses dwarfed by huge surrounding buildings - won't be long until it turns into a tower too.

São Paulo by Rolls or...

...by orderly queues on the metro

Justice building

Catedral do Se

Slithery things in their natural-ish habitat

Rarely seen coral snake eggs

Ts doris got the bus back to Peru and the lads went about fitting the new shocks. We visited Luiz of The Specialist who used to drive about Brasil in a Series 1. He loved it so much he set up a landy workshop which is now thriving - that day it was packed with over 40 Brasilian-built Defenders, Discoverys and a couple of Range Rovers (both of which are imported from England). We managed to grab some floorspace to fit the shocks and do the usual top up of the transfer box oil. We showed Luiz and his wife ihana.com and they were so impressed that they gave us some souvenirs and arranged a special visit to the Landrover factory for the following afternoon.

We slept in a hotel beside the famous Interlagos F1 circuit and awoke to a good breakfast and the sound of a few cars buzzing around the track. Before going to the landy factoryr we visited the Butanã snake farm. Here they milk poisonous snakes, spiders and even caterpillars (milking caterpillars?) to produce anti-venom drugs and a whole array of other wicked drugs that are used in organ transplants and for vaccines etc.

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