This is a little late. I did my last visit to my erstwhile post in Recife last week. I visited Recife only three times. It was not like São Paulo or Rio that constantly called for attention.
One of my goals in Brazil was to get away from the big cities of Rio, São Paulo and Brasília into the rest of Brazil. I will not say the “real” Brazil, since there is no such thing. Each section is real in its own way. São Paulo probably has the biggest claim to be called “real,” since it has so many people and is so productive. But there is a lot more.
And there are big changes. Brazil used to be the land of Samba and coastal cities; it is now more a country of sertaneja and interior growth.
Before going to Brazil, I wanted to see all that, put my feet on the ground. I succeeded to some extent. I visited a total of eighteen out of the twenty-six states, including the extreme ones like Acre, Rondônia and Roraima. The ones I missed were mostly near Recife. There are lots of smaller states up in the Northeast and I didn’t get there. I thought of making a last run in my last few weeks. I could have hit all of them by driving in a circle from Recife and then just setting a toe into Tocantins & Mato Grosso, the other two I managed to miss. But I thought that was just a false way to do it. So I did not succeed in visiting all the states of Brazil, but I got around a lot.
My picture up top is the beach in Recife. It is nice that they have grass and trees near the water. There is less a beach than Rio. Maybe one of the reasons is those sharks. Look at that sign. Recife has some kind of special conditions with the reef. Sharks evidently are kind of herded toward the beach and they come very shallow. They eat a few people and it kind of puts a damper on people’s enthusiasm for swimming.