Hot off the press!

Image from AFSA.ORG (Foreign Service Journal)

Just fresh off the press: read it all!

The latest issue of the Foreign Service Journal (FSJ, April 2012) discusses the Family Member Employment, and the search for meaningful work overseas. Reading through the whole edition, you will find great stories about living and working as a Foreign Service spouse.

Several FS spouses shared their experiences and impressions regarding working overseas. It’s an honor to be one of the contributors to this edition.

Congratulations to all who contributed to this month’s issue. Here’s the link to another FS blogger, also sharing her impressions about family member employment.

Thank you for reading! 😮

Eating on a budget: economy restaurants for local food lovers in Recife!

Hey there! This past weekend we didn’t wanna cook… Kids had a ton of energy, kept running inside the house, so we decided we had to get the whole family out of the apartment… “let’s enjoy the great weather, while appreciating the local food..“. Our surprise: a lot of eateries, restaurants, even the fast-food places did NOT OPEN UNTIL 5PM! We’re shocked (and a bit frustrated, as well!) “Should we go back and try to cook something?”, we discussed, before asking our toddlers from a savior play date with the neighbors (we’re very thankful for that, BTW!)

As a result, we begin our search, trying to find a place that was kid-friendly, open-setting, good & healthy food and… not too expensive… But, the most important thing, was getting the kiddos out of the house… 😮

Here is the result: Always wonderful to share:

Economy Restaurants in Recife

You may be on a budget, but eating well is still possible in Recife. This listing of places to eat covers only restaurants. There are many traditional style restaurants, but Brazil also offers self-service restaurants where you pay by weight. Such restaurants are very popular, especially at lunchtime, but be sure to arrive early to get a good choice. Lunch here starts at 12.00 and popular places will have little left after 1.30pm. The price per kilo varies according to the range and quality of the offering, and by the location of the restaurant. Most shopping centers have food courts with a mix of fast food and self-service restaurants. On the whole we would suggest that the food is over-priced and lacks quality compared to other options outside the shopping centers. Stand-alone restaurants in shopping centers are better quality, but also tend to be over priced compared to similar establishments in other street locations.

Chinese food in Recife is cheap, as it is in many countries. You do get what you pay for and, for the most part, are not recommended.  However, Japanese food is very popular and generally of good quality. Many better self-service buffets also include sushi in their offering.

Cafes, bakery’s (padarias), delicatessens and bars often have good food options, from nibbles and snacks to more substantial meals. You can find more details under the heading bars and cafes

Of course, beach and street food are to be found everywhere in all the destinations covered by this site, so to do justice to the subject all listings and tips are under a separate heading Beach and Street Food

La Plage (Crepes) Good crepes in a very well docorated restaurant. Rua Professor Rui Batista, 120, Boa Viagem. (81) 3465 1654. Tues-Sat 6pm-11.30pm; Sun 5pm-11pm; Mon closed. (R$16+) MAP

Anjo Solto (Crepes) A very popular and well established venue popular with the fashionable crowd. Also gay friendly. Usually lively from 10pm until very late. Galeria Joana DÁrcPina.(81) 3325 0862. Daily 6pm until the last client. (R$18+). MAP

Pin Up (Burgers), This place offers fantastic burgers for little more than a McDonald´s in the setting of a very American style diner. Avenida Herculano Bandeira, 204, Pina. (81) 3466 0001.  5.30pm-1.30am tue-sat; 5pm-24.00 sun; closed mon.  MAP

Laça Burguer (Burgers & Sandwiches) Better than McDonald’s for a similar price, but not as good as Pin Up.  Avenida Visconde de Jequintinhonha 138-ABoa Viagem. (81) 3461 2179.  Mon-Thurs 11.30am-2am; Fri-Sat 11.30am-5am; Sun 12.00-2am. MAP

Entre Amigos o Bode (Regional) A large bar/restaurant serving traditional regional food and meat. This place is very popular with locals. Rua Marquês de Valença 30 Boa Viagem(81) 3312.1000. Mon-Fri 11.30am-2am; Sat & Sun 11.30am-4am . Approx. R$25 per person.

Parraxaxá (Regional). The name is of indigenous origin and is pronouncedpahashasha. This very popular self-service (pay by the kilo) restaurant serves regional cuisine in a rustic theme restaurant. A very wide selection of savory and sweet dishes. The plates are massive so make sure your eyes are not bigger than your stomach, or it will cost you! Rua Baltazar Pereira 32, Boa Viagem(81) 3463 7874. Mon-Fri 11am-10pm; Sat & Sun6-11pm. Approx R$20 per person. MAP

Ponteio Grill (Regional) One of the most famous Brazilian eating experiences is the churrascaria (pronounced showhaskaria), a grill where you help your self to the salad bar (including a limited sushi menu) then take what meat you want as it is brought to your table on large spits. Its good to go when you are very hungry, as this is a fixed price restaurant for all you want to eat. The price is less earlier in the week and higher on weekends. There are other similar restaurants that cost more, and some a little less. We recommend this as being the best value for money. Avenida Boa Viagem 4824Boa Viagem. (81) 3326 2386. Mon-Thurs 12pm-4pm and 7-12am midnight; Fri-Sun 12pm-12am midnightApprox R$30 per person. MAP

Feijoada do Vovô Hortêncio (Regional) Feijoada is considered a national dish of Brazil and is served only at lunchtimes, usually on weekends. Folklore suggests feijoada was a “luxury” dish of African slaves on Brazilian colonial farms, as it was prepared with relatively cheap ingredients (beans, rice, collard greens, farofa) and leftovers from salted pork and meat production. Some versions, even in good bars and restaurants, can be disgustingly fatty. The feijoada at this restaurant is excellent, and we recommend it to more adventurous eaters. Definitely it is not for vegetarians. Rua Setúbal 1603, Boa Viagem. (81) 3074 4788. Fri-Sun Lunchtimes only .  Approx. R$20 per person. MAP

Chica Pitanga, (Regional/International) A very popular self-service/pay-per-kilo restaurant with a large buffet offering. Get here early, especially at weekends, to avoid waiting for a table.  Rua Petrolina 19, Boa Viagem. (81) 3465 2224. Mon-Fri 11.30am-3.30pm & 6pm-10pm; Sat & Sun 11.30am-10pm. Approx R$20per person. MAP

O Poeta, (Regional/International) A good quality self-service/per kilo restaurant that is very popular with local office workers. Get here early if you want a good selection. Avenida Rio Branco 243Recife Antigo. (81) 3224-3310. Mon-Fri only 11.30-3.30pmApprox R$20per person MAP

Panquecas e Saladas(Regional/International) A good quality self-service/pay-per-kilo restaurant in an old house. A more limited choice than others listed here, but still good and fresh. Take a table upstairs for a cheap and cheerful meal in a nice setting. Good juices too. As with all self-service places, get here early. Rua da Guia 93,Recife Antigo(81) 3224 2259. Mon-Fri only 11.30-3pm. Approx R$10 per person.MAP

O Buraquinho (Regional) A simple restaurant in one of the most interesting and picturesque historic squares of Recife. It serves regional dishes for very good prices. Pátio de São Pedro 28, Recife Downtown(81) 3224 6431. Mon-Sat 11.30am-12.00am midnight. Sun closed . R$20, MAP

Royal (Regional) Established in 1944, this restaurant serves traditional regional dishes and focuses on offering value for money. It is only open for breakfast and lunch weekdays to serve its office worker clients. Rua Mariz e Barros 181Recife Antigo (81) 3224 5854. Mon-Fri only 8am-3pm. R$20, MAP

Tio Pepe (Brazilian) This restaurant was founded in 1964 by José Garrido Cid, an immigrant from Galicia, Spain. Before he died, Pepe passed the baton to one of his Brazilian daughters, Mirtes, who has modernized the business. Generous portions of fish, meat and poultry are freshly cooked, most on a traditional coal grill. Rua Almirante Tamandaré 170, Boa Viagem. (81) 3341 7153. Tues-Sat 11.30am-11.30pm; Sun 11.30am-4.30pm Approx R$30. MAP

La Comedie (French) This little French bistro is one of the hidden gems of Recife. It is tucked away behind the French language school Aliança Francesa, and located in a small building with a covered patio area. It offers a selection of high quality French snacks and dishes. The mini quiches are great, so are the soups. Not to forget: the Brazilian spin on the French classic for dessert, the petit gâteau, is amazing, not chocolate but uva (grape) or goiaba (a sweet guava jam). Rua Amaro Bezerra 466Derby. (81) 3222 0245. Mon-Wed 12pm-10pm; Thurs-Sat 12pm-11pm; Close Sun. R$20.MAP

La Cuisine Bistrô (French) We have included this restaurant in the Economy option, but prices here can go from reasonable to expensive, depending on your choice from an extensive menu. Soups, salads, sandwiches and other light options are possible if you are on a budget. They are very good quality and this is a nice restaurant. When I am looking to go budget here I take The French onion soup and the petit gateau, both classic and 95% of the time very well done, a great buless expensive options.Avenida Boa Viagem 560Pina. (81) 3327 4073. Mon-Thurs 12pm-11pm; Fri 12pm-1am; Sat 1pm-1am; Sun 1pm-11pm.R$25 MAP Review Exclusive Offer

Passion of the Christ in Brazil {Nova Jerusalém, Pernambuco}

De maneira simples, porém criativa, as apresentações contavam ainda com a participação de familiares, na maioria mulheres, e amigos que juntos contracenavam nas ruas utilizando-se do cenário local. 

No ano de 1956, Plínio Pacheco chega a Fazenda Nova e encanta-se pela bela atriz Diva Pacheco, filha de Epaminondas. 

Desde então são 42 anos de representações ininterruptas dentro das muralhas, atraindo espectadores do Brasil e do mundo. O espetáculo, que chega a sua 44ª edição, será encenado entre 15 e 23 de abril. Neste ano, Lacerda, que completa 33 anos, representará Jesus Cristo pela terceira vez. Já Fafá estreia no papel de Maria, mãe de Jesus. O elenco conta ainda com a atriz Vanessa Lóes, mulher de Lacerda, como Madalena; Sidney Sampaio, como Pôncio Pilatos; e Carlos Reis, Herodes.

Das ruas para o maior teatro ao ar livre do mundo, assim começou a ser encenado o espetáculo da Paixão de Cristo de Nova Jerusalém.

 Era 1951 e o comerciante Epaminondas Mendonça teve a ideia de realizar pelas ruas da pequena vila de Fazenda Nova, no período da Semana Santa, a encenação da vida, morte e ressurreição de Jesus Cristo. 

A inspiração partiu após ler em uma revista como os alemães da cidade de Oberammergau realizavam uma apresentação semelhante.

 Enquanto Epaminondas atraia hóspedes para o hotel da família e movimentava o comércio local, Sebastiana, sua esposa, de veia artística cultural e teatral, cuidava da direção do espectáculo.

De maneira simples, porém criativa, as apresentações contavam ainda com a participação de familiares, na maioria mulheres, e amigos que juntos contracenavam nas ruas utilizando-se do cenário local. 

No ano de 1956, Plínio Pacheco chega a Fazenda Nova e encanta-se pela bela atriz Diva Pacheco, filha de Epaminondas. 

Desde então são 42 anos de representações ininterruptas dentro das muralhas, atraindo espectadores do Brasil e do mundo. O espetáculo, que chega a sua 45ª edição em 2012, foi encenado entre 15 e 23 de abril do ano passado, quando tivemos a oportunidade de prestigiá-lo na pré-estréia. Naquele ano, Lacerda, que completava 33 anos, representou Jesus Cristo pela terceira vez. Já Fafá estrelava no papel de Maria, mãe de Jesus. O elenco contou ainda com a atriz Vanessa Lóes, mulher de Lacerda, como Madalena; Sidney Sampaio, como Pôncio Pilatos; e Carlos Reis, Herodes.

Jesus aparece ao fiéis entre anjos

Pregação aos fiéis

Discussões no Templo: 
Jesus entra triunfalmente em Jerusalém, aclamado pelo povo. Expulsa os vendilhões do Templo e discute com fariseus, escribas e doutores da lei.

A despedida dos apóstolosA última ceia:
 Jesus reúne os seus discípulos para a Última Ceia e deles se despede, dando-lhes o pão (o seu corpo) e o vinho (o seu sangue).
"Eu sou o Corpo e o Sangue"

a Ceia com os Apóstolos

A Traição de Judas e a Prisão de Jesus

Judas betrayed Jesus
Preparation for the arrest - Jesus prepara-se para a prisão

The Temptation

Jesus atormentado busca auxílio do céu

Agonia no Horto: 
Jesus sofre antevendo sua Paixão e Morte.

O Bacanal de Herodes

Convidados do bacanal de Herodes
O Bacanal de Herodes

O Julgamento de Jesus, a Condenação

Ao Palácio para Julgamento

Pilatos questiona a Jesus

Pilatos pede a Jesus um milagre

Jesus perante Herodes e Pilatos:

Herodes pede a Jesus um milagre e não é atendido. Irritado, o rei manda-o de volta a Pilatos. 
O Pretório Romano é invadido pela multidão e pelos que querem a morte de Jesus. Pilatos, o Procurador de Roma, chega ao Pretório numa biga romana e saúda os seus legionários.

Humilhação e Coroação de Jesus, Jesus leva sua Cruz

Jesus is brought out to judgement - Jesus é trazido a julgamento

Jesus suffers

O Encontro com as Mulheres de Jerusalém

O perdão à Maria Madalena

- à espera de Jesus


A chegada à Gólgota


Últimas palavras à Nossa Senhora

A morte de Jesus.

myspace layout codes

Também na primeira apresentação de 2011 foi usado, pela primeira vez, o recurso de áudio-descrição para deficientes visuais. De acordo com a organização, o sistema permitirá que o público, com um fone de ouvido, escute uma narrativa sobreposta ao som original da peça descrevendo imagens, sons e textos. A encenação da “Paixão de Cristo” é dublada. Em 2010, 80 mil pessoas vindas de 22 estados brasileiros e 12 países assistiram ao espectáculo. De acordo com a organização do evento, a ideia de construir uma réplica da cidade de Jerusalém para as encenações da “Paixão” foi de Plínio Pacheco, que chegou a Fazenda Nova em 1956. O fascínio que o espetáculo da Paixão de Cristo de Nova Jerusalém exerce no público não está apenas na grandiosidade das construções, na atmosfera que ali se respira e na beleza da história de Jesus. Reside também na participação ativa do público, diante da mobilidade das cenas. Entre um ato e outro, uma multidão movida pela emoção passada pela boa interpretação dos atores, caminha entre os cenários, transportando-se por algumas horas à época de Cristo e revivendo sua saga.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Through

Through the aerial roots of this old tree...

“Through”. That’s the inspiration for this week’s photo challenge from WordPress. Humm… Physically speaking? Emotionally through? A passage? A rite of passage? Too many different interpretations for this one single theme. What’s “through” for you? For me, it means passage, strategy, possibilities to overcome challenges…

Since we’re getting through one more week, let’s see how it goes regarding the challenge:

A detailed view from a particular site at the Reuben Island Prison, South Africa - many tried to escape through...
Walking through the city, through old cobblestone steps, São Luis do Maranhão, Brazil
Taking a boat trip through the mangrove in Itamaracá Island, Brazil
Watching the sunset through the rocks in Jericoacoara Beach
"Take my hand and walk me through this path... through your lens I'll see your world..."

And finally, walking through the excited crowd, experiencing the largest street carnival in the world!

Other posts from WordPress bloggers:

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Brasilia Teimosa, from a distance… refreshing images and Portuguese text

“Brasilia Teimosa” [Stubborn Brasilia] is the oldest urban non-official community in Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil. a great way to observe what’s happening along the coastline, and within the community, is by enjoying a meal with with friends at the Biruta Bar & Restaurant:
Source: Wikipedia:
Brasília Teimosa é um bairro do Recife.
Situada na zona sul do Recife, entre o bairro do Pina e o Porto do Recife, numa área caracterizada por uma linha contínua de arrecifes paralela à orla, surgiu através da ocupação de uma área antes denominada Areal Novo, iniciada em 1947. Seus habitantes, pescadores, negociantes, estudantes, donas de casa, têm ligação muito forte com o mar.

O nome foi uma alusão a Brasília, então nova capital do Brasil que estava sendo projetada no governo de Juscelino Kubitschek, em contraste com a área em que os moradores viviam, em perene ameaça de expulsão. Essa persistência teve grande destaque nos anos 1950, quando essa área foi destinada pelo Governo do Estado à construção de depósitos inflamáveis. A perseverança dos primeiros moradores, que reconstruíam suas casas durante a noite quando ao longo do dia eram demolidas consolidou a ideia de teimosia, coincidente com o período da construção da Capital Federal. Mais antiga ocupação urbana do Recife. O bairro foi uma das primeiras áreas a serem urbanizadas com recursos do BNH, através de um projeto de urbanização denominado Teimosinho. Esse projeto tomou força em 1982, com a relocação de famílias da Vila da Prata, com ações também em 1986 e 1989, mas a área era novamente ocupada. Em 2004, uma grande intervenção urbana foi realizada pelo Governo Federal com a construção de uma avenida à beira mar. Atualmente o bairro está modificado urbanisticamente, em sua orla marítima, com restaurantes típicos e comércio de frutos do mar, o forte da economia dos seus moradores.

333rd Post: Surrounded by marine dolphins [video]

Every year, people travel to Fernando de Noronha, a group of islands off the coast of Brazil, to meet some of the archipelago’s most famous residents: spinner dolphins:

The spinner dolphin is a tropical oceanic dolphin that lives in groups numbering three to more than two thousand individuals. Of the 37 different dolphin species, it is the third most abundant in the world and is named for its tendency to shoot out of the water and complete as many as seven rotations whilst airborne.
The dolphins usually surface during boat rides, showing off their acrobatics skills as they leap out of the water and putting on a real show. The stunts they perform are more than simply fun; they’re an important form of signalling, drawing the attention of the boat, which, in turn, protects the rest of the pod from potential predators. The communication system consists of different types of jumps and beats made with the body on the surface of the water, producing turbulence when the dolphin completes its dive.
The daily routine for the spinner dolphins in Fernando de Noronha involves feeding, primarily during the night, followed by a morning relocating to the appropriately named Dolphins Bay. They arrive in the bay at sunrise and depart for various feeding areas in the afternoon.

Dolphins Bay (Baia dos Golfinhos), located off Sancho Beach, is a top destination for dolphin spotters. The bay’s waters are the calmest and deepest in the entire archipelago, ranging from 0 to 25 metres but averaging about 15 meters in the centre. The floor of the bay is composed predominantly of volcanic sands with scattered rocks and can be accessed by a single trail that offers a good vantage point from which to observe the activities of the spinner dolphins. One ideal point from which to observe Dolphins Bay is Dolphin Lookout, set 55 metres above sea level. It can be reached via a one-kilometre-long walking trail that begins in a parking lot at Sancho Bay.

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Fernando de Noronha Marine National Park: wildlife

Fernando de Noronha in Brazil is famous for its exquisite natural environment, pristine beaches, and tropical climate where the sun shines the whole year! A paradise for scuba diving in Brazil, there are numerous things to do on the Fernando Noronha island. The wildlife of Fernando de Noronha is very rich, and one of the main attractions of the island are the Spinner Dolphins which can be seeing 365 days a year from the Dolphins Bay Viewpoint or on a Noronha boat ride. We were fortunate to spot a few other “representatives” of the archipelago’s wildlife.

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