Today we followed Esha’s group as they explored the district of Alcantra.
Our assignment is to photograph the local shops and observe how the traditional shops contrast with the newer institutions. We started by visiting a beautiful quaint little grocery shop. The grocer had been working there his whole life…the years were evident in the facade of the store and in the wrinkles in his face. As we spent time at the location it was evident by watching the people who walked by and their interactions with him, that he was a strong fixture in the community.
After we got what we needed there, we moved onto a new modern grocery, a barber shop, an old coffee shop, and an old hardware store. The contrast in the neighborhood between the businesses that were more than a century old (passed down through the generations), versus the shops that are about a decade old (being run by a new community of Portuguese) was such an interesting dynamic. A lot of the buildings had the old traditional tile fronts but were being renovated to be rented out as things like an Airbnb. This neighborhood best exemplifies the shift that is happening in this quickly changing city.
The edit tonight symbolizes the end of the week for us and it’s been a good one! We’ve covered a lot of miles with these kids and some of them were bumpy, but we’ve gotten to the end of this part of the journey and now we are on to the celebration!