My recent South American adventure was the fifth continent I hit in 2013, and it was a blast. So in keeping with my tradition this year of blogging about my international travels, I wanted to write a little something about the trip. (This blog was actually written just after I returned, but – for reasons unknown – was never posted! So here it is.)
For this trip, I was back out with the Alcatrazz boys (Graham Bonnet, Howie Simon and Tim Luce), doing an extended set of Bonnet notables; Alcatrazz, Rainbow and Michael Schenker Group faves. The interesting thing was – due to some prior scheduling issues – I traveled to and from Sao Paulo on my own, separate from the fellas, and even on a different airline. Wound up connecting through Panama. No biggie.
We arrived in São Paulo with an extra day off, but our promoter Milton made good use of our time and had us do a bunch of media; interviews with various mags, vid shows, podcasts, etc. The main thing I noticed about the South American press folks was just how knowledgeable (and hard-core!) they seemed to be about music, the rock world, and each of our careers. They all asked cool, intelligent questions, and most had a variety of memorabilia for us to sign. It was a pleasure.
Healthy vegan fare is always a valuable commodity for me in my travels, and fortunately, there was a nice market a stone’s throw from the hotel. I was able to load up on all my fresh produce there.
Special Note: they had the absolute greatest peaches I have ever eaten. I tried to ask a few of the employees about where they got them, if they were in season, etc. But of course, no one could understand me. (What did I expect? Should a Brazilian expect for me to understand Portuguese at my local market?)
This produce came in handy for my two smoothies per day. Beyond that, it was all about an assortment of snack foods that I brought with me, and usually just one other sit-down meal I would have each day.
Honorable mention would include the special pasta dish that the hotel chef made for me each evening I was there. I would order it with a large salad – supplement it with more raw veggies from the market – and it made for a nice meal.
After the show, Milton and co. brought in pizzas, and arranged for a special veganized arugula and sun-dried tomato number for me. Always appreciated.
Beyond that, I was knocking down my usual Ultimate Meal smoothies, although it took three different adapters – yes, THREE – to get my blender to work at this hotel. Living large, people!
Also, the hotel had a very basic gym set-up, so I trained there each day, getting in a little cardio and weightlifting. It’s challenging to get a great workout in on these “minimalist” set-ups, but very doable. Just have to be creative with how you put together your routine.
Rare Beauty Abounds….
The infamous beauty of Brazilian women was more than evident as soon as I stepped off the plane over there. But here’s what’s interesting; to say you love South American women is kind of like saying you love American women. What is an American woman, really? Like all of us Americans, she is usually a mutt of multiple ethnicities, with bloodlines extending through Europe and/or Africa and/or Mexico, and/or the Middle East, and/or Asia and/or pick any place in the world. She could be Jewish or Mormon or Muslim. The only true “Americans” – that is, natives – are the American Indians. Likewise, I was reminded that the only true South Americans were of Indian descent, as well. So really, all of these fine-ass Brazilian women I was seeing were typically of some kind of Spanish, Portugal, Italian mish-mash; darker features, gorgeous skin, black hair, etc.. Any way you slice it, let’s just say that it was a very pleasant ambiance over there.
The actual show was cool. We met some really nice folks before and after and we all really enjoyed the smaller, more intimate club environment. The crowd was appreciative and responsive. The band played well and, in the days that followed, it was nice to see so many positive reviews and so much genuine appreciation of what we’re tying to represent out there.
Hope to head back down to Brazil in 2014. Stay tuned…