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Day 38: Salvador

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In the heart of the Recôncavo, the rich alluvial hinterland of All Saints' Bay, lie the twin towns of Cachoeira, in background, and São Félix. Their position at the lowest bridging point of the Paraguaçu made them prosperous.
Michael Palin - BrazilToday we bid farewell to Salvador, a most remarkable city.

Breathtaking architectural beauty sits side by side with corrosive poverty and decay. A non-stop music track animates and deafens, and a life ethic rather than a work ethic dominates. The Old Town has been our home for almost a week. I have at times felt trapped, as locals warned us against some of the surrounding streets after dark, and I noticed taxi drivers didn't stop at red lights after a certain time of night, but I prefer this edginess to being in a city tamed for the tourist. Then I think of the number of hotels and pousadas opened in the streets of Santo Antônio since the Redfish and others showed the way, and I think of the economic boom and the luxurious Bahia House and someone telling me that air travel inside Brazil was expanding by ten percent every year, and I wonder if Salvador will be able to resist being tamed.

What is indisputable is that here in the North-East the story of modern Brazil can be read most clearly. This is where Brazil was born.
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  • Series: Brazil
  • Chapter: Day 38: Salvador
  • Country/sea: Brazil
  • Place: Salvador
  • Book page no: 162

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