I have half an hour to walk to the stadium, and the same distance to walk to the center of the old town. Today Monday Feb. 29 is working day. I spend the day working in my hotel room. Boring at times, especially on tour, fun at home, but I must do it, as it pays for my bills and keep me on the tour. Then in the afternoon I take a break and walk to the city.
The flight from São Paulo to Porto Alegre takes one hour fifteen minutes. Arriving at 3pm Sunday afternoon Feb 28, it seems like everyone in Porto Alegre is enjoying the Sunday off in the parks. I walk to the stadium half an hour away from mmy hotel, some 2,5 km (1,5 mile), and check it out. It is impressive with a great look and design. Then I walk to the old town, many great buildings, and I find my favorites.
I arrived into São Paulo Sunday a week ago. Now it is Sunday Feb 28 and it is time to leave. I have come to like São Paulo. It wasn’t that monster big ugly city I could not understand. Behind all those large buildings, on the Berrini street and all the smaller side streets, there were parks, cafes, bars, people, not just suit and tie people, but ordinary residents, painters, workers of all sorts.
It is São Paulo and Saturday show day Feb. 27. No heavy workload today. I am free to plan the whole day with 100% focus on the show tonight. As a control freak, with my stupid “walk the city” all day before the show on Wednesday, today it will be all different. It will be “business as usual”. Like I use to do it.
My camera broke down yesterday in Sao Paulo. It is Thursday Feb 25, the day after the first Sao Paulo show. I must find a new camera. That is my first priority now. First some work until noon. Then looking for a shopping center. I walk over to the nearby Morumbi Shopping Center. To be honest, I would rather have a root filling at the dentist than spending more than an hour in a shopping mall. Still. I have a mission. I must find a new camera! After a couple of hours browsing through every floor and every shop I realize I have seen plenty of cloths, shoes, shops, shops, shops, food court, even a few cameras, but certainly not a concert camera. Time for plan B.
São Paulo Brazil Feb 24, 2016 and it is show day! The first time The Rolling Stones will be performing in São Paulo since 1998. It took 18 years for them to return. I have been working all day Monday and Tuesday, and wanted to see the city with some hours walking in the afternoon. Showday. Not recommended…
São Paulo is the largest city in South America, with around 11 million people living in the city, and another 10 million around it. All these seems to have a car. My good friend Dean – who do know São Paulo well – told me about the traffic, and adviced me to stay close to the venue Morumbi Stadium. So I went way over my hotel budget and booked at the Sheraton WTC in the Brooklin area, 5 km (3 miles) and one hour walk from the stadium, also within 15 minutes walk to other places I need to visit during my stay, like the Stones hotel.
Rio de Janeiro was such a great city to be in when The Rolloing Stones were in town!. I was here ten years ago as well, to see The Rolling Stones playing in front of one and a half million fans at the beach of Copacabana. This time on the Olé Tour 2016 it was a better concert, because it was at a stadium, and because everyone in the stadium were really into the Stones.
The Rolling Stones at Maracana Stadium Rio De Janeiro! It was a large crowd and a large stadium. The band used the wings and the walkways a lot, due to the size of the venue, so even if I was not center stage, I got to see Mick, Keith and Ronnie close up many times. Even Charlie with his “Brazil” inspired bright yellow shirt was easy to spot.
Rio de Janeiro is a great returning visit ten years after the amazing Rolling Stones at the Copacabana 2006 show. Three weeks into the Rolling Stones 2016 Ole tour, I was returning to Rio. A great tour start week in Chile, nine days in Buenos Aires, and a short three days visit to Uruguay. Rio is next, and it took just 48 hours, I was in love with Rio, once more!