Published: September 22nd 2008September 22nd 2008
Brazil - it doesn´t look that big on a map.
That, however, is a mistake. Clearly whoever was responsible for drawing up the maps of the world had run out of crayons by the time they reached Brazil. Oh yeah, it kind of juts out of South America and has lots of jungle. Well we are here to set the record straight. As we finally emerged bruised and battered from our 36hr (!) bus journey from Belem at the mouth of the mighty Amazon to Salvador at the bottom of the spikey sticky-out bit, we felt that we had paid our dues. Surely we had crossed this mighty country, we must be almost home by now. Well ... not quite.
This place is huge. We had barely crossed a third of this behemoth state and have at least 48 hrs more of deliriously exciting bus travel to go. This is a place that defies catagorisation as a country it´s just too vast. So far we´ve spent 4 days on a boat, 2 days on a bus and one very expensive flight just scratching the surface.
But this isn´t exciting, it isn´t even interesting. What everybody really wants to
know is - ´Is Brazil really the Sexiest Nation on the Planet?'
And of course that´s really what we´re here to find out.
Lets start with a biggy. Yip it´s the Brazilians themselves. Straight off the bat we´re outing them as ... well ... a touch portly. I know what you´re thinking. Sea, sun, sand and many other post-watershed s´s should produce the bronzed and buffed nation of dreams for pasty, pale and puny Brits. Unfortunately the truth is, as ever, quite, quite different. It turns out that the side effect of one too many buffet lunches and beefburgers will take its toll even in the hottest of climes. With the average Brazilian now topping the scales somewhere between heafty and chunky. Of course this does not apply across the board (much less in Salvador than Northern Brazil), but the average is definetly on the way up. It wouldn´t even surprise us if Brazilians now reigister as one of the world´s most flabby nations - sure sexy in some (very weird) circles, but not doing much here.
Surely, however, this would not matter in the long run and what with a reputation as one of the
best dressed nations on the planet all would be forgiven. This i´m sure was true and Brazilians were prehaps the best dressed nation. The only problem being that when they piled on the pounds they forgot to buy new clothes. Everywhere you look mounds of flesh exploded over jean tops. Squidgy lumps squirm their way from beneath t-shirts. In some extreme cases they combine to escape their material prison in some frighteningly hypnotic wobbly bid for freedom. This is Dunkin Donut territory. Note:
Due to the sensative nature of readers please be assured that photos will be of more relaxing images such as buildings, flowers and big hairy spiders.
Once you throw in the backwards baseballs caps and the stonewash jeans you do have to wonder about who thought Brazilians knew how to dress themselves. This is no Milan, oozing cool or Paris where even the bums look chic. Perhaps we´re being too hard and perhaps Rio and Southern Brazil will be different, but expectations die hard and for once, we look good.