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Follow Jorge Amado's Footsteps in Recife

08/08/2018 - 13h12

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FERNANDO GRANATO
RECIFE

Writer Jorge Amado used to spend summer vacations with his family in the Pernambuco capital. During his time in Recife, he liked to "play poker and hang out with his friends," according to painter and poet Tania Carneiro Leão, 82, who witnessed these stays.

Arnaldo Carvalho
Columna de Cristal en la ciudad de Recife
Coluna de Cristal in Recife city

Amado (1912-2001) created the character Quincas Berro d'Água, a peaceful father and husbands who turns into a inveterate drinker, from an alcoholic man known to wander in Recife's Pina beach.

Pina is a Recife neighborhood little known by the average tourist. The beach features a straight line of reefs that run parallel to the coast, and it includes Brasília Teimosa, the city's largest slum.

Pina's residents have a strong connection to the sea, especially the fishermen. Rafts anchored by the sand show that the local economy is very dependent on fishing.

rosane pietro
Praia do Pina
Pina beach

On Sundays, the beach becomes alive with the forró blasting from the beach bars. Countless soups and seafood dishes come fresh from the bars' kitchens to the patrons' tables.

During his stays in Recife, Jorge Amado enjoyed eating at Restaurante Leite, in downtown Pina (Praça Joaquim Nabuco, 147), the oldest restaurant still in operation in Brazil.

What piqued his interest was the coming and goings of the Recife intelligentsia, such as writers Gilberto Freyre, José Lins do Rego and Ariano Suassuna.

Translated by NATASHA MADOV

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