A Little & Large Market

Every Sunday there is a farmers' market in Barra that sells everything from fruit and veg to paintings and pastels (a kind of Brazilian pasty). A few weeks ago we took a lovely little stroll down the beach to the market, and a harder one back home again due to the heat and the physical exertion of walking on wet sand. In Brazil a lot of food shopping is done on Sundays, at markets across the country. It results in these bustling hives of activity, which are a great place to people watch... and chilli watch.

I took these photos on my phone so please excuse the poor quality. I still don’t feel 100% secure taking a £300 camera out and about with me without fear of being robbed. There is certainly crime in Rio de Janeiro although so far we have been untouched by it. I think carrying an object worth more than the average monthly salary in a country with a lot of poverty is just asking for trouble though. It's still difficult to know whether we are being overly cautious or rightfully wary.

Anyway we ended our Barra market trip with a pastel. When I took this photo I didn’t notice the partially naked man in the background, as this sight is so common place in Rio.

On a different day we went to Feira de São Cristóvão, or Saint Cristovao Market depending on your openness to the foreign tongue. We met up with a work colleague of mine, Cris, who showed us around this big market. It was a lovely way to spend a day and all three of us had a great time. We saw a couple of shops dedicated to Cachaça.

These bottles had various fruits floating around in them to impart flavour...and one of them had garlic in!
Meat on stick! Oh how I missed thee.

The market had a lot of tat for sale. However unlike the majority of Asian markets we have been to, there wasn't any hassle or pressure coming from the store owners. There was no physical forcing into stores and no immediate bartering attempt at every product you looked at or touched. People just let you wander in and out as you pleased. It meant that it felt more like a shopping centre than a market and in the hot weather it was much appreciated and created a very pleasant atmosphere. We bought a couple of trinkets to homely up our flat a little bit but generally there wasn’t too much that we were interested in.

However we were not really there to consume with our increased purchasing power, we were there to experience and enjoy the atmosphere. There were two big stages that hosted live music throughout the day and people came and danced the hours away. There was a great family atmosphere with many young families here who had come to seemingly just enjoy the music and the entertainment and have some of the delicious Brazilian cuisine that Katie spoke about here.

The restaurant kindly offered props for some really authentic photo opportunities!

As well as the big stages, there were a few smaller ones nestled between the stalls. This couple were loving it!
Just a short one today... Tchau.