I <3 Santa

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 I start at the arches of Lapa.

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Or Flamengo Beach.

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Or the Selaron steps.

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Or the metro stop in Gloria.

If I’m in a rush, or wearing heels, or carrying groceries, or I want to feel the breeze on my face, I ask one of these guys to take me up the hill to Santa Teresa.

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But most of the time I just walk.

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I walk on cobblestones and art.

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Past windows I looked out in other lifetimes.

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Till I see people spilling off sidewalks and trolley tracks with no trolleys and I’m in Santa Teresa.

My favorite place I’ve ever lived.

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Where it’s more fun in front of the bar than inside it.

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Where a restaurant with no name serves the best pão de queijo I’ve ever had.

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Where brunch on the weekends is all you can eat, and wifi is free but nobody’s using it.

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Where I can shop organic on Saturdays next door to a school for the performing circus arts.

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Where trees grow out of restaurants.

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And everything looks like a memory I’m about to have.

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Of pink stores

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And pink bars

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Walls of cachaça

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Walls behind pools

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Walls that are breathing

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Walls beckoning me in

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And killing me with color

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And words in progress

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And unspeakable moments.

 

 

 

 Nearby:

Prazeres

“It’s a pleasure to be in Prazeres” – damn straight.

Head up the mountain towards Christ the Redeemer, past Santa Teresa, take a right when you see this guy and you are in a place called Prazeres. (link)

 

 

 

Prazeres Street Art

Prazeres is a favela up the road from Santa Teresa, with ridiculous views and even more ridiculous street art. (link)