são paulo 2001

yesterday i seriously thought i would not like são paulo. it seemed empty for a city with 16 million-or-so inhabitants. and the people who where on the streets where either selling incense, crystals and other hippie-shit (on the Praça Republica next to my hotel) or the seemed to be a bit too fond of tattoos and body manipulations for my taste (all the kids i ran into on the subway on their way to some kind of tattoo convention). but mostly they were simply absent.

the lack of people on the streets was apparently also due to the fact that it was sunday AND referendum-day and brazilians seem to take both their sundays and there referendums rather serious. as far as the latter are concerned it even seems that the police is not allowed to arrest anyone 3 days prior to any election/referendum as this would mean that the arrested cannot vote. apparently this law is a relic from a past when politicians would get supporters of their opponents arrested so they could not vote. as far as i understand this it is not that crimes in this period go unpunished but rather the arrests will be delayed.

sao paulo skyline

anyway i have changed my mind about the city. this place is absolutely mind boggling. it is pretty much what i would have imagined a 21st century megalopolis when i was a kid. the city center is an anarchic chaos of high rise buildings which seen as a whole has a heterogeneous beauty that surpasses the clinic beauty of places like amsterdam by orders of magnitude. combine this with science fiction attributes like heli-pads on top of lots of buildings (that people actually seem to use for helicopter travel within the city), lots of satellite dishes and other aerials, private properties surrounded by electric fences and churches that have their own parking garages underneath them (pay by credit card!) and i am sold to São Paulo.

tonight on Avenida Paulista there was a open air screening of Kubrick’s ‘2001: A Space Odyssey‘. This is probably the most appropriate places to screen this movie i have seen so far…

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2 Responses to “são paulo 2001”

  1. Michiel Says:

    I’m quite surprised to see these pictures of Sao Paolo. I never knew it had such an American look. Though I don’t see how you can call Amsterdam’s 18th century beauty clinic (unless you’re talking about the office buildings here) I definitely agree Sao Paolo has a very futuristic atmosphere. Too bad they seem to rather show us the favelas on TV in Europe…

    (PS: Your rss feed was malfunctioning the past week)

  2. meanwhile… » Blog Archive » vicious penguins Says:

    […] for some reason the hotel staff got the reservation a bit wrong and though that monica, vishwas and me are all called monica. at least they started addressing us like this when we checked in yesterday night. this already reminded me of the penguins in madagascar, but things got even more madagascar like a bit later. we had inquired about a japanese restaurant that would be open on a sunday night (which given how serious they take their sundays here is a bit of a difficult thing to find) which resulted in one of the ladies from the reception volunteering to walk us to one near Avenida Paulista that according to a friend of hers would be definitely open. […]