Thursday, 26 July 2012
Porto Alegre, Brazil
Porto Alegre is the capital and largest city in the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul. Porto Alegre was founded in 1772 by immigrants from the Azores, Portugal. In the late 19th century the city received many immigrants from other parts of the world, particularly Germany, Italy, and Poland. The vast majority of the population is of European descent. The city lies on the eastern bank of the Rio Guaiba (Guaiba Lake), where five rivers converge to form the Lagoa dos Patos (Lagoon of the Ducks), a giant freshwater lagoon navigable by even the largest of ships. This five-river junction has become an important alluvial port as well as a chief industrial and commercial centre of Brazil.
Lowry refers to the port in his novel Ultramarine; Popplereuter says "This time we made a trip to Sudamerika - Santos and Paraguay, San Francisco, Florianpolis - Port Allegre (Lowry's spelling). We have been rolling around the world." (P.86).