I was a total recluse at the beginning of March. I blame the incessant rain.
Besides, I was storing up zeal for Victoria's visit from the 13th-18th. We had five days to reconnect and paint the town: thanks to a reprieve from the rain, I feel we succeeded on both counts.
We averaged about 15km per day on foot, with the exception of the last day (which I spent whining about the blisters my new shoes were causing) when we still clocked 8km on the pedometer. We explored the Asian bairro Liberdade and shopping mecca Bom Retiro, compared the business district on Avenida Paulista to Brigadeiro Faria Lima. We wandered Jardins for an hour looking for that same darn Starbucks that I always lose. [For the record, it is on Santos and Campinas!] We dined on Chilean, Moroccan, and Chinese, as well as some uncommon pasta delights and homemade Brazilian classics. And of course there was an assortment of beer, wine, cocktails, and the occasional water to wash it all down.
And, óbvio, I took her to the marvelous Mercado Municipal for the famed Mortadella sandwich.
This is not the one we ate. We inhaled ours before remembering to take a photo. Ack, close enough.
That Victoria...she's nuts.
Hot Stuff is a big fan of the hot stuff.
I once learned the expression tipo exportação, which signifies a higher quality product that is produced for export rather than local consumption. Interestingly, these massive, robust strawberries--better than any I've ever seen--were imported from the U.S.!
Still, the cashews, pictured here in fruit form, are clearly Brazilian.
Leaving Mercado, we stumbled upon a new (to me) treasure, AndinaSP. Our salesman, my new friend Elson, gave us a tour of the tasting facility, the kitchen, and the wine cellar. They have great prices and an amazing selection. Score! I picked up a pair of these lovely, proper wine glasses. Any betters on how long it will take me to break them?
More on Victoria's visit in the next post.
Man, I am so Paulista! Visitors: seja bem-vindo!