Now for a keen observer, online stalker or my mother you will notice a few days were lost between cities, it's fine pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!!
Salvador and the Bahia state have a lot of history. Salvador was the first landing point of Portuguese, therefore it was the centre of the economy because of sugar production and was an area of competition with the Dutch. It was also the focal point for brazilian slavery that has created very high African Brazilian population composing nearly a third of the current population. It currently has less economic power but the experiences of its past are visible in the city and the people.
As you may recall it was a long bus ride to Salvador but my gracious host met me at home and after a shower myself, my host and his roommate went out for drinks and some food. I got a quick lay of the land and then it was time to sleep. At this point in my trip the rain had ruined many possible beach days so all I wanted to do was go to the beach! And that is what I did for a few days. Salvador is where I finally tried my new favorite food, queijo Coelho. I will not claim it is good for you but it is gluten free and delicious. For you sorry folks that live in a world where this does not exist it is a big chunk of cheese on a stick grill in front of you in a little coal oven perfectly toasting the outside and melting the inside. I don't have to say anymore! It is a new phenomenon to me to basically have people cater and serve me on the beach, want a coke zero BAM with a straw and a lime! So the beach was my home for a few days!
After a little pestering from my host about if I would see anything else besides the beach I went to the historic neighborhood, Pelourinho. Pelourinho is a gorgeous area filled with historic and colonial building that have been very well maintained. The man at the tourist office even spoke English! Miracle! So I toured through the market that is just touristy crap, linens and meat! Yup! a good combo! The market is in the lower part of the city so I took the elevator up for 15centimos and continued exploring.
Well I walked through the area I was able to watch a capoeira demonstration which is martial arts style dance local to the Bahia area. The one man had dreadlocks to his knees so of course of all the men he is the one to approach me. He spoke of my positive energy that he could see and continued until we got to the point of us reproducing together, in his words I would put milk in his coffee! so obviously the wedding is next week I hope you got your invitation! haha :s Actually I attempted many times to ditch my following companion without success. It became clear it would be difficult when he offered to cut off all his hair because I didn't like it. So I did what any rational woman would do, promised to meet him later and ran away!
That was the most eventful part of Pelourinho, unless you count the acquisition of 2 new dress one which seems to be the only thing I am photographed in. Enjoy the pictures.
Upon arrive in Salvador I saw a lot of colorful little ribbons tied on to cars, building, people that typically said Bonfim on them. I have since learnt that they are wish ribbons and you tie them on to this and await your wish and that Bonfim is a very famous church that is know for miracles. The fence around that church is completely filled with wish ribbons. If a ribbon is not enough be sure to bring a cast or replica of any deformities, ailments, pictures of open wounds or warts and they will hang them in a room for all to see and pray for your recover yes it is as creepy as it sounds! No pictures!
Due to some complications in schedule I had to switch hosts for my last few nights. But my new home was in one of the best areas with an amazing view and good people.
I spent the evenings with my new friends in Rio Vermelho, the popular night hang out with very large patios to eat and drink. I was a little intimidated being there and felt a little out of place and little too gringa-ish but it was as uneventful as evenings out can be. Though at one point hole walking along with my new friend I needed to go to the bathroom. I must admit we were struggling a bit to communicate. He told me oh in the summertime at night sometimes I go in the water. Umm nope! So I waited we passed a restaurant and still confused I asked the waiter for the bano (Spanish),restroom, bathroom, loo all responded to with bright eyes and no help from my friend. It was getting a little close for comfort and in near tears I said toilet! Lightbulb! Ahh banheiro! Ahh yes still not sure how I did not know this word yet after several weeks but yes! Banheiro! Everyone thought I wanted to bath! Hence going into the water at night!
And one final note on Salvador, the food! the food of this region is different then all the other states because of the high African population. It is all delicious and I have no pictures of it because I always find it weird to take pictures of food, though I was close with the cheese! On that note good night!