Rio Vermehlo is a the artsy part of town. Home to hipsters, college students, and general Brazilian bohemia it’s a place where “diversity” is lauded. Nestled between a favela to the east, and a chain of high end and exspensive restaurants towards the Orla, Rio Vermehlo is one of the more diverse upper class neighborhoods. It’s as safe as Brazil can get without being completely whitewashed. On a Friday night you can see all types of people out at their respective resturants, enjoying life. That is until now. O Mercado do peixe (The Fish Market) an outdoor eating place where you can get good and cheap moqueca, with a side of local samba de rua is closing. Mercado do Peixe is where you go if you want to see the people. The demographic that’s always erased when it comes to tourism because they aren’t exotic enough to exploit, or rich enough to cater to. Brazilian women who still perm there hair and muscle bound brazilian men can be seen dancing and blasting pagode while drinking cheap beer, and I love this place for it.
Salvador is lauded for it’s antique charm and at times its feels as if this city is stuck in the past. The culture here celebrates the slaves that built this city, but neglects their descendents who are subsquently the people who keep it running. And now with the impending closing of this beloved landmark, where will the people who work and eat here go? And more importantly, who is coming in to take their place?