Sao Paulo touring

imageSao Paulo is the third largest city in the world. I’m not sure what the first two are— Tokyo , Mexico City—at that size who’s really counting. And they’re not really cities anyway, just a concrete maze populated with myriad neighbourhoods that act as cities within a city. Sao Paulo is a cross between Tokyo and New York—filled with ugly buildings but with a vibrant street life that cranks away on all cylinders.

One of the problems with Paulinistas, as the residents are called, is they are a rude and not all that helpful. One the good things about Paulinistas is they are rude and not all that helpful. Nonone’s been all that helpful but noone has approached me to ask me for money, sell me something, or just try to talk to me. My existence is irrelevant. I have a number of theories on this. One is that Sao Paulo in June (winter) doesn’t attract a lot of non-business tourists and probably doesn’t throughout the year. Most just hightail it to Rio or other places along the coast. And can you blame them. When I left DC at 1 pm yesterday they said it was 15 degrees Celsius and overcast in Sao Paulo . When I arrived at around 10 pm it was around 15 degrees and overcast. When I walked around the city this morning it was 15 degrees and overcast. We’re up about 2000 metres here so its “tropical” in name only. So, they don’t really know what a tourist is and how to rip them off.

image Another factor is I look and dress like everyone else. It’s generally a mixed population here so while predominantly Mediterranean there is plenty of northern Europe around to keep me blended. And unlike parts of Mediterranean Europe the men here dress like I do, that is, poorly. The women on the other hand, well, more on that later.

My final theory is that the criminal element around here have determined that it’s more cost-effective just to steal from someone rather than trying to con them into some low-yielding scam. The easiest way I found to attract hangers on was to stay in one place with a map in my hand. Not something I like to do in principal but necessary sometimes if you want to end up where you want to go.

Posted by patrickj on 06/27 at 10:36 AM
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