Bandeira do Brasil

Bandeira do Brasil

Sunday, December 16, 2012

AND THE CAPITAL OF BRAZIL IS...

Brasilia Cathedral
Brasília (Portuguese pronunciation: [bɾɐˈzilɪɐ] is the federal capital of Brazil and the seat of government of the Federal District. The name is commonly spelled Brasilia in English. Administratively the city is located in the Federal District, which is in the Central-West Region. Physically it is located in the Brazilian Highlands.
Brasília has the 5th largest GDP among Latin American cities, and the 3rd in Brazil. Its GDP per capita is by far the highest among the larger Latin American cities, at a high—for Latin American standards—average of around US $30,000.
Brazilian Congress and Senate
As the national capital, Brasília is the seat of all three branches of the federal government of Brazil. The city also hosts the headquarters of many Brazilian companies. 
Palácio do Planalto - seat of the federal government
The city was planned and developed in 1956 with Lúcio Costa as the principal urban planner and Oscar Niemeyer as the principal architect. On April 22 of 1960, it formally became Brazil's national capital. Viewed from above, the main portion of the city resembles an airplane or a butterfly. The city is commonly referred to as Capital Federal, or simply BSB. Residents of Brasília are known as brasilienses or candangos (the latter referring to those not born in the city, but migrated there when the city was established). 
Juscelino Kubitschek Bridge

In local usage, the word "Brasília" usually refers only to the First Administrative Region within the Federal District (Distrito Federal), where the most important government buildings are located. Brasília has a unique status in Brazil, as it is an administrative division rather than a legal municipality like nearly all cities in Brazil. Nationally, the term is almost always used synonymously with the Federal District, which constitutes an indivisible Federative Unit, analogous to a state. There are several "satellite cities," which are also part of the Federal District. Brasília International Airport is the main airport in Brasília, connecting the capital to all major Brazilian cities and many international destinations. It is the third most important airport in Brazil, in terms of passengers and aircraft movements. 
Satelite view of the Monumental Axis
The Monumental Axis ("Eixo Monumental" in Portuguese) is a central avenue in Brasília's city design.
The avenue begins on the National Congress of Brazil building and is considered part of the DF-002 road. Its first section is known as "Ministries Esplanade" ("Esplanada dos Ministérios"), as it is surrounded by ministries buildings. Many important government buildings, monuments and memorials are located on the Monumental Axis.
A common urban legend persists that the Monumental Axis is the widest road in the world, where "[100 to 160] cars can drive side by side". This is untrue, as the road consists of two avenues with six lanes on either side; a total of twelve lanes. However, it was in the Guinness Book of Records as having the widest median (central reservation) of a divided highway (dual carriageway) in the world.
Brasilia is also one of the host cities to the 2014 World Cup:

Sources: Wikipedia 

PLANO PILOTO
video


Thursday, December 6, 2012

MEET OUR BRAZILIAN LEPRECHAUN

Saci (pronounced: [saˈsi] or [sɐˈsi]) is a character commonly regarded to be the best known character in Brazilian folklore. He is a one-legged black or mulatto youngster with holes in the palms of his hands, who smokes a pipe and wears a magical red cap that enables him to disappear and reappear wherever he wishes (usually in the middle of a dust devil). Considered an annoying prankster in most parts of Brazil, and a potentially dangerous and malicious creature in others, he will nevertheless grant wishes to anyone who manages to trap him or steal his magic cap. However his cap is often depicted as having a bad smell, most people who claimed to have stolen this cap often say they can never wash the smell away.

An incorrigible prankster, the Saci will not cause major harm, but there is no little harm that he won't do. He will hide children's toys, set farm animals loose, tease dogs, and curse chicken eggs preventing them from hatching. In the kitchen, the Saci would spill all salt, sour the milk, burn the bean stew, and drop flies into the soup. If a popcorn kernel fails to pop, it is because the Saci cursed it. Given half a chance, he will dull the seamstress's needles, hide her thimbles, and tangle her sewing threads. If he sees a nail lying on the ground, he will turn it with the point up. In short, anything that goes wrong — in the house, or outside it — may be blamed on the Saci.
Besides disappearing or becoming invisible (often with only his red cap and the red glow of his pipe still showing), the Saci can transform himself into a Matitaperê or Matita Pereira, an elusive bird whose melancholic song seems to come from nowhere. One can escape a pursuing Saci by crossing a waterstream: the Saci will not dare to cross, for then he will lose all his powers. Another way is to drop ropes full of knots; the Saci will then be compelled to stop and undo the knots. One can also try to appease him by leaving behind some cachaça, or some tobacco for his pipe. 
Every dust devil, says the legend, is caused by the spin-dance of an invisible Saci. One can capture him by throwing into the dust devil a rosary made of separately blessed prayer beads, or by pouncing on it with a sieve. With care, the captured Saci can be coaxed to enter a dark glass bottle, where he can be imprisoned by a cork with a cross marked on it. He can also be enslaved by stealing his cap, which is the source of his power. However, depending on the treatment he gets from his master, an enslaved Saci who regains his freedom may become either a trustworthy guardian and friend, or a devious and terrible enemy.
In order not to let this folklore die, the city of Botucatu, in the state of São Paulo, holds a Festival  in the month of October to pay hommage to this prankster. Some city dwellers claim to raise some of them, and sacis are allegedly seen in the woods close to the city. 
Source: Wikipedia

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