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Sep 21 2011

A Day in Rio

I don’t have time to make a full post but I thought I would at least put up a couple of pictures of my day yesterday. I spent the bulk of the day at Globo Television and I will write a full report of that at some point this week. Globo is the biggest media company in Brazil and it is easily on a scale with the big companies in the US.

A sand castle along the Copa Cabana

There were several very serious sand castles along the beach as we drove to the airport to head to Sao Paulo but I thought this one was worth particular attention.

A view from the cab window.

This is a view down close to the domestic downtown airport in Rio.

The most striking thing to me so far about Rio is the huge contrast between the “haves” and “have nots” here. The wealthy and privileged seem to be very wealthy and privileged and the middle class seems to be almost nonexistent.

The Brazilians call the slum areas favelas and they are a sort of shanty town set right in the midst of commercial areas or right next to planned areas.

It seems that a sort of squatter’s rights apply to these areas when they are taken over and they will spread over a hillside.

A picture of a favela from Wikipedia
I drove by this yesterday but could not get a picture.

The other staggering thing was the pricing of imported goods. I saw an iPad2 at an Extra store for $2699 Reiale, which is about $1700 American. Import duties on products average about 50% so it is no wonder that the practice of flying to Miami for a “shopping trip” is so common in Brazil.

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