Saturday, October 29, 2005


After our amazing stay in Jeri, Amie and I headed up the coast a bit to a city called "Sao Louis". There we experienced first hand the amazing spectacle of "Marafolia".

Marafolia is Sao Louis' off season carnival. 3 nights of music and unrestrained partying in the streets of the city right on the beach. Marafolia is part carnival, part concert and a pinch of Burning Man thrown in for good measure. The city closes off a main street that runs along the beach for the party. Huge semi trucks that have been turned into giant mobile stages\art-cars, with bands on top of them provide a moving concert of sorts that the crowds follow through the street. These huge decorated mobile stages flow slowly up the main drag as the people around follow it up the main drag to the final destination of a huge stage area with bleacher seating.

People form what is called a "Blocco" around the moving stage. These bloccos consist of a huge roped in area that surrounds and follows the truck as it crawls up the road thumping its music out into the vast crowds. The people within the blocco all wear a T-shirt with the bands logo and name on it and you must be wearing this shirt to be inside the roped off area, the blocco. The majority of the crowds at these events are wearing a shirt to support their favorite band. Some times they wear one shirt, follow the blocco up the street and then pull another shirt from their pocket to be able to follow another band up the street.

Truck after truck, band after band cruise up the street late into the night with the crowds following along either inside the blocco, or in the case of Amie and I, following just outside of the roped off area with the rest of the revelers. Every kind of music you can think of is represented so everyone has something to shake their groove thang to.

The bands on top of the mobile stages play the crowds favorite songs, whipping the bouncing crowd along into a non-stop frenzy. Huge speakers adorn every spare inch of space on the stage on the music blasts out over the heads of the crowd as the band above sings and dances throughout the night.

The crowd was made up of all locals, as it seems not many tourists have caught on to the off season carnival experience. Amie and I got more than a few stares from people wondering what two tourists were doing lost in the mass of pressed dancing bodies. People would come up and offer us a smile and show us they appreciated us being there. We saw very few other tourists for the 3 nights we attended the event. The local Brazilians proved that they are born to party. They drank until they could not walk and then often passed out only to wake up a while later and continue saturating themselves with potent drinks. There were times when the crowd got a bit out of control but Amie and I kept our collective cool and just kept our eyes open and aware. It was a party unlike anything you would see in the states. The music is in their blood and they party as if there is no tomarrow. We made it through three nights of this eclectic electric experience and the only downside was I was pick-pocked the first night somewhere in the pressing crowd. We never bring much money out with us so I didnt loose much. But I did start using my money belt (given to me by the ever thoughtful Bobbie Potsic) more often.

The rest of our time in Sao Louis we spent recovering and wandering through the ancient cobble stone streets admiring the look and aged feel of the colonial buildings that are scattered through the city. As in many other places we visited we were astounded by the crumbling beauty of these old buildings and peeling walls.

Our hotel had a great view that looked out over the city. Red tile roofs faded in the sun stretching off into the distance. A patchwork of colors and sounds that never seem to end.

Amie took me to parts of the city where she had taken some of her photographs from her "Tropicalia" series. It was wonderful for me to see the actual locations of some of these images I have grown to be so familiar with over the last months

After Sao Louis we wandered south to the city of "Natal". Then on to "Praia De Pipa" and "Olinda".

All that and a photo of Jordans arse will be covered in the next installment of the honeymoon blog.

Ciao for now....



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