Tm Baynes : Sao Paulo



(For my friends here, especially M)

January and 32 degrees of heat

Everyone noticeably more tanned than me

Energy and colour still the same in San Paulo

Traffic still crazy

People still friendly

Now the place is familiar and the rhythm is right.

I have the same driver at the airport, Elaine

She greets me with a big smile

We hug and make the pact:

To rendezvous on time for the journey back in three days time

I know where I am are going

Into the Hilton at 8am and the Bell Boy organises a coffee

It arrives before you have finished checking in

Service and miles my home for three days

Glass marble and pale pale wood

Chocolates from the manager

Across the plaza from the hotel and into the office

A second home for the duration

San Paulo,

Energy and heat and wonderful women

Brazil so famous for fabulous womanhood

Travel the greatest privilege, the work there too

Be grateful for only the minutes or hours you have to step out

To soak up the culture

Travelling is being open and appreciative.

Can there be a better evening than in the company of a friend?


The best of warm conversation

Just two bars full of Paulistos,

In both I am the only gringo in the Mercearia and Posto Seis

M and I talk of work, talk of history and culture,

I hear about Luiz de Camões,

His book Os Lusíadas

Portugal’s Chaucer

Learning that Portuguese was born out of Spanish

That the former can understand the latter but not the other way around

Discovering how big and beautiful this country really is


Travel is learning.

In each and every bar the same energy, People out talking, enjoying the warm summer evening,

Music, music oozing out of every pore

Brazilian beer and small side dishes

Sustenance as substantive as any banquet

Flavoured and garnished with laughter and conversation

Oh lucky traveller.

Thank you M.

Tim Baynes
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© 2003-2008 TBaynes All Rights Reserved 

One thought on “Tm Baynes : Sao Paulo

  1. Nice sketches and poem! However, two corrections: first, it’s PaulistAs, and not PaulistOs – hey, I’m one! Second, Portuguese was not born from Spanish – both were born from Latin, and are related – and yes, people who speak Portuguese people can understand Spanish, but not the other way round. ;).

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