February 6th 2012
Excerpt from journal of travels in Brasil 2012
|Left to right: Danielle, myself, Lívia, Maria enjoying a Saturday Samba|
Three days into my visit here in Sao Paolo and the felicidade (happiness in portugues) is becoming part of my bloodstream. Yesterday, we went to a feijoada and Samba. This is a gathering at a very nice, quaint restaurant in an authentic part of the city. The street was filled with colorful buildings and smiling people enjoying their Saturday afternoon.
A man next door is in the barbershop getting his haircut meanwhile we are preparing to indulge in a typical Saturday Brasilian style lunch. Feijoada is a plate of rice, beans and pork served aside with flour of mandioca. The beer complements the dish to perfection. Fried banana and mandarin are also a nice touch.
The tasty food goes down slowly with the cervejinha (beer) and the Samba band is finalizing their set up. Testing their many beautiful instruments, they all pass smiles, laughs and jokes. When the first drum beat hits and the beautiful vocalist of African descent begins to sing, the people light up the room and start dancing Samba. I had no idea how the steps were but my girlfriend took my hand and showed me slowly the steps. By this point the cervejinha has lowered any inhibitions I had to dancing in public a dance I'd never known. The steps come easier with each beer and each drum beat. After several songs, the whole restaurant and it's patrons are on our feet dancing together. The love being shared through this dance is like nothing I've ever seen. With every passing song, the samba eases its way into my heart and I'm in drunk, happy and in love. I so happen to look across the dance floor, aka the restaurant to see one other gringo dancing his life away. We catch eyes and realize that we are the two luckiest gringos on the planet to be experiencing this. It is impossible to be upset, stressed or angry while dancing samba with these fine, Brasilian people. The power of the drum beat and energy around the room encapsulates any fleeting thought of yesterday or tomorrow. There is only this beautiful moment, with these beautiful people sharing this beautiful sound.
"O Samba é o pae do prazer, o samba é o filho da dor"
Translated: "Samba is the father of pleasure, samba is the son of pain"