Between 2005 and 2012 I worked as a social worker with refugees and migrants in the UK, and I was often intrigued to listen to what they thought about my country, as well hear them talk about adjusting to life in a strange place whose way of life they were unaccustomed to and whose language they barely, for the most part, spoke upon arrival.
Then, in February 2012, I moved to São Paulo and thought it would be fun to give folks back home an account of my experience of being a migrant / expat.
Looking back I think my earlier posts reflect a difficult initial phase in which I compared everything in Brazil to back home, and this, I imagine, made me sound just like just another whining ‘expat’. However, over time I think the blog has increasingly come to reflect my growing affection for Brazil, Brazilians and, of course, the city of São Paulo itself.
São Paulo is forever maligned and unfavourably compared as being Rio’s ugly sister. However, São Paulo is, as I’ve slowly discovered, a city in which if you take the time too explore it you’ll find a place as fascinating and complex as any other you are likely to visit.
Most of my observations about the city have been made on foot and gradually this has led me to incorporate concepts such as those of psychogeography into my writing – which I guess means my degree in Sociology and Social Anthropology finally came to some good use.
Elsewhere, you’ll also find posts relating to travel (both in Brazil and around South America), futebol and Brazil’s burgeoning taste for microbrewed beers.
Basically, there’s a bit of everything.
See here for an explanation of the title of this blog, the book is on the table.