Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Winter in São Paulo

I've done winter in Brazil two different times in the past. The first was in Salvador da Bahia. Winter there was tropical. It meant wearing shorts, a tank top and carrying an umbrella. I ruined a good pair of shoes in the rain there, but it was fine since sandals were much more appropriate. When rain combines with heat, it's easy, and you know it is going to end soon. The second time I did winter was in Rio. There, winter means wearing jeans and carrying a sweatshirt. It also means that electric showers are much less fun than using the awesomeness of an aquecedor, whose very potential means lovely hot showers. See, the blazing hot summers in Rio mean that hot showers make very little sense, but winters are a little too chilly to get by without them.

São Paulo is different. (São Paulo is different from the rest of Brazil in a number of ways, but that isn't what this post is about...) It's at a higher elevation than either Rio or Salvador and is thus cold here. Every night I sleep with three blankets on my bed and often layer when I go to sleep. It isn't that it's dropped below 9 degrees centigrade (which is normal for a city in the south like Porto Alegre), but that some of the apartment buildings in the city don't have anything resembling insulation, or even windows that close completely. Mine just happens to be one of those buildings. The first week I was here, the weather fooled me. It felt like LA in the spring with extremely short days. But now it's cooling down. I know I'm getting away with something by missing LA's heatwave right now, but seriously this weather is bumming me out. Maybe I wasn't meant to experience two winters a year...

Also, in unrelated news, I really miss my bike and the research is speeding by like a metro train. Go figure.

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