For more lists of 10 and insights into Sao Paulo, see American Exbrat in São Paulo.
My daughter and I spent a rather long time in the States for the holidays, about six weeks. It’s funny how as the time goes by, resetting yourself across two countries and cultures becomes easier. While we are happy to be back, because despite the heat, our life here is pretty damn good. But the time away has highlighted some of the things I still haven’t been able to come to terms with in Brazil.
- That black olive on your pizza has a big, molar crushing pit in it. Why? Why not take it out before you put it on a pizza? If you are too lazy to pull it, why put it on the pizza at all? If you are an unsuspecting foreigner, you could easily be unaware of the perils of your pizza.
- Drivers are completely unfazed at the fact that they just almost ran over myself, my daughter and my dog. The signs that the state of SP have been posting around about not hitting pedestrians with your car might not be working.
- That napkin at the lanchonete or padaria is the least absorbent paper product ever made. Again, why?
- Brazilians wear t-shirts that they cannot possibly understand the meaning of. I think all of us foreigners have seen someone wearing a t-shirt with text that must have been misinterpreted by its wearer, or they simply don’t understand English at all. As far as I know, only my friend Katie has been brave enough to take a picture of one. (See above.)
- No unlimited calling/no roaming charges cell phone plans. I’m just a little jaded because I paid US$60 to turn my Brazilian cell into a communication dream with one month of unlimited calling, data and no roaming.
- The cost of maple syrup and marshmallows. Sure, I stocked up. But it won’t last forever.
- The absolute lack of real chocolate chips. If you see a local bag of chocolate chips here, don’t be fooled. It’s not the real thing.
- The cost of clothes and shoes. Oh, I cringe walking through a mall. My daughter had a growth spurt while we were in the US, so I bought appropriately. But I’m hoping she slows it down until the next trip. I’m taking just a few dollars for the cutest clothes on sale.
- Foreigners who live here and constantly complain about the country. The above are observations, not complaints (really…, ok maybe the cell phone packages was one… and the chocolate chips…). But for some reason, I get glimpses of some FB groups I avoid coming across my news feed every once in awhile displaying the despair some feel about being trapped here and left to suffer. Unless Brazil became a communist country while we were away, if you are miserable here, I believe you are free to go.