26
Mar 10

6 Guys Named Moe — Richard Heller Mistakes Carnival for British Theater

6 Guys Named Moe giving a show during Carnival in São João dos Angolares. Photo by Richard Heller

This is a carnival troupe performing on Mardi Gras in the town of São João dos Angolares. I had caught their act the night before, in the pink cultural centre of São Tomé.

A power cut caused a delay, and I had tried to chat to them in French while we waited for the lights to be restored.

What with working in a second or third language and frequent interruptions by fans and stage managers I never succeeded in establishing their name.

It sounded like Mogambo, but that’s the name of an overblown Fifties movie with Clark Gable and Ava Gardner, so I decided to call them Six Guys Named Moe. More accurately, it should have been Three Guys and Three Screaming Drag Queens Named Moe.

Their act was the same in both places, with no apparent change between the sophisticates of the capital and the out-of-towners. In the cultural centre they had a stage to work from but in São João dos Angolares they stood and delivered in a small open space between shacks.

The São João crowd was packed, but they all courteously made space for the foreigner with the camera, and urged me to take pictures. In truth, the act was not terribly photogenic.

In both places it consisted of a long dialogue, I think in Creole, between a man and a woman, played with maximum falsetto drama by one of the Screaming Drag Moes. There were short spells of dialogue and then a somewhat monotonous guitar riff, with percussion.

Sao João dos Angolares

São João dos Angolares. Photo by Hans Kleijn

In both places it drew a lot of laughs, and I could tell that some of the passages were distinctly risqué. I imagine too that the script was an old favourite. In neither place was there any charge to view the performance or any collection.

Were the Six Guys on some sort of grant, keeping alive a venerated entertainment as an alternative to the endless TV soap operas and football matches?

I took in about half an hour of the act but there was no sign of any change in the basic plot, still less an ending. I slipped away and walked back to the Roça São João. From about a mile away I could still hear the screaming drag queen.

Richard Heller is an Oxford graduated British author, journalist, speechwriter, ghostwriter, editor. His novel A Tale Of Ten Wickets is available on Amazon.


23
Mar 10

Carlos Alberto Jr.’s Poverty — A Realistic View of São Tomé e Príncipe

Girls carrying clothes

Girls carrying washing basins with clothes, on their way home. Photo by Carlos Alberto Jr.

The scene is impressive. Hundreds of women washing their clothes in a river. On a road to one of the Roças (plantations) of São Tomé.

The river crosses the island, and then flows into the Atlantic. Clothes are hanging on the rocks, and on the bare soil.

When done, the women, and children, mostly girls, with basins on their heads, take the clothes back home.

Washing Clothes in a River

Women Washing Clothes in a River. Photo by Carlos Alberto Jr.

A ‘Poor’ Country

São Tomé and Principe is a poor country.

One literacy program for adults, a 2-year course created by the Brazilian government, in partnership with São Tomé, graduates 15 thousand pupils.

Inflation in 2009 was 19%. Dobra, the currency, is worth almost nothing. To buy one dollar, you need 16 thousand Dobras. A loaf of bread costs five thousand Dobras.

Money exchange is done at banks, and on the street. In the city center, men rub their thumbs to signal cash exchange, when they sight a visitor.

The roads are bad, bumpy. Any trip to the interior takes a long time. In a village, when the car slows down, children and adolescents, reach out and ask for candy.

Along the way there are hundreds of these shouts: “sweets, sweets, sweets.” When we say we don’t have any candy, they ask for a notebook, a book, a pencil, a pen, a ball, a folder. The requests are usually preceded by the word ‘white’ pronounced in several ways: ‘branco, blanco, banco, brranco’ (as if they had a French accent).

Unemployment is high. As elsewhere in Africa, there are many street vendors. About 80% of the budget of São Tomé and Principe comes from international aid.

The Politics

The election timetable is almost annual. Legislative elections are planned for 2010. Presidential elections for 2011.

Each election, the country has to pass the hat among the international community, asking who can organize elections. This puts pressure on the country to review its system, and hold coinciding elections during the same year.

It seems there is much oil in the territorial waters of São Tomé, but the population has no details. They don’t know the size of reserves, or how the process is being conducted.

The Angolan Connection

Angola and Nigeria vie geopolitical influence on São Tomé. Sonangol, Angola’s oil company, bought 35% of the National Oil Company of São Tomé National Fuel and Oil Company (Empresa Nacional de Combustíveis e Óleo – ENCO).

They say it is forbidden to film and photograph the government palace.

Well, here it is.

The National Palace. Photo by Carlos Alberto Jr.

I may still get caught at the airport, accused of taking pictures of the Palace.

In Angola there are also these things. It is forbidden to take photos of the Government Palace, the National Bank of Angola, the ministries.

They say that South Africans went to Angola as tourists, took pictures, and then bombarded the city. Luanda was never bombed. They’ve created a myth, and it lives on. It’s a tiring myth.

The Angolan government is building a huge embassy in São Tomé. Several floors, facing the sea. A Portuguese businessman, told me that senior figures of the Angolan government are buying bars, restaurants and building hotels in Sao Tome.

The Portuguese businessman: the Angolan asked me the price. I said it was 3.5 million euros. He asked me how much was the price in dollars. Angolans think only in dollars. His wife liked the place. It’s even pretty. It cost me about 600 thousand euros to build. It’s gonna make me some good money.

Yeah.

Some Statistics

  • About 160 thousand people live in São Tomé and Principe. The GDP is approximately U.S. $ 197 million and will decrease by 4.2% in 2009 because of the international crisis. The GDP is as follows: agriculture (16%), industry (14%) and services (69.9%).
  • The country imports all its consumption. The trade balance shows a deficit imported U.S. $ 88 million and exported U.S. $ 8 million last year.
  • The country was once world’s largest producer of cocoa. Now there’s lack of investment in research and production improvement in the industry. Exports of cocoa today is U.S. $ 3 million.
  • Life expectancy at birth in São Tomé is 68 years. Every woman has on average 5.3 children. 73% of the country is Catholic.
  • Outside of the capital São Tomé, there is almost no lighting. Lamps and candles light the night for those who have no money. Small generators guarantee the wealthier a little light and a fan or air conditioning for the islanders who live in the middle of the equator.
  • In the ranking of corruption prepared by Transparency International, São Tomé e Principe peaked at 121 in a total of 180 countries.

Carlos Alberto Jr. is a journalist for TV Brasil, and in the past years has visited and written about 15 African countries. This story was first published in September 2009 in the Diary of Africa (Diario da Africa).


18
Mar 10

Updated: Elections in Sao Tome & Principe Announced

 

U.S. President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama With World Leaders at the Metropolitan Museum in New York

Barack and Michelle Obama, and President of Sao Tome e Principe, Fradique de Menezes, at the Metropolitan Museum. Photo by U.S. Department of State

Fradique de Menezes, the President of Sao Tome e Principe,  has announced by decree that next Santomean municipal elections will take place on the 25th of July, followed by Parliamentary elections on the 1st of August. The announcement was released on radio and television late Wednesday night.

Here’s a list of coverage (in Portuguese) by various news sources reporting on the upcoming legislative elections. No English-language news source apart from SaoTomeBlog is yet to announce the news.

Update: You may now also access the news in English on Afrol.

Legislative elections were originally planned for February, then April, but were subsequently indefinitely postponed, until the announcement yesterday, March 17th.

For political background, here’s a Wikipedia article on Santomean politics. Santomean parties include ADI and MLSTP/PSD. The current Prime Minister is Joaquim Rafael Branco.

 


17
Mar 10

Dely Amorim’s Canal Santola — Spreading Santomean Vibe Worldwide

Canal Santola

Canal Santola

Canal Santola is a popular hub for information on Sao Tome e Principe. The site relies heavily on Lusophone music for it’s popularity. One can watch videos of African music, including latest Zouk, Kizomba, and Tarraxinha tracks. Catch news updates and links of the Santomean world. Or read up about the history and culture of the country.

We called up the the founder Dely Amorim to ask about his site, and how it got started. Below is the story in his own words (translated to English).

 

Lack of Information

Canal Santola was started in 2005. I was looking for music and information on the Internet. But everything I found was sites with the same information. They almost seemed to be copies of each other. None of the sites had music from Sao Tome e Principe. I became tired and decided to create something different that would have all the information that anyone would want to know about Sao Tome.

Birth & Growing Popularity

The first version I launched in 2005 and received almost 350 thousand visits. The second version in 2008 received in less than 9 months one million visits. It was very controversial and violated copyright. After many complaints Portuguese police closed down the site. I was processed and had to pay a fine of 1500 Euros for any damages and losses as they called it. Canal Santola remained closed for more than one year.

Future

Now this is the third version of the site launched in January 2010 and now we’ll see what happens. The story continues…

Thanks Dely and Canal Santola. Today we featured the first in a series of Santomean websites. You can expect more in the future.


17
Mar 10

Beautiful: 7 Saotomean Beaches — How to Make Your Choice

 

Praia das Conchas - São Tomé e Príncipe

Praia das Conchas. Photo by José Augusto

As a country of tropical islands, Sao Tome e Principe is pretty much surrounded by beaches. On the island of Sao Tome, your basic decision is this – to either head North, or South?

Once you go in one direction, it’s hard to get back to the other side. There’s one single road and you’ll end up backtracking because there’s no way to around the island by car.

Capital

If you’re really lazy, then within the capital there’s the Praia Lagarto which is not bad, but you’re much better off driving a bit outside of the city.

North Coast

If you decide North, then you’ll need your own transport of a taxi. Or you can take a long half-a-day walk. Or rent a bicycle from the capital. It’s not always easy to find a beach because the coast if forested and you have to take small roads turning right towards the sea.

Praia Tamarinos - Sao Tome e Principe

Praia Tamarinos. Photo by Karbone

One – the first beaches you’ll encounter are the sandy palm-fringed Praia Micolo, Praia dos Governadores, and  Praia da Juventude huddled together 15kms out of the capital – right next to the Micolo fishing village. Up the road about a kilometer further is Praia dos Tamarinos with lots of sand and playing kids.

praia conchas5

Praia das Conchas. Photo by Saotomean Consulate in Marseille

Two – next up is Praia das Conchas 20km or some 30 minutes driving. This is a snorkeling beach, and magnet for expatriates living in Sao Tome e Principe. Here lava tidepools harbor sea creatures, there’s rocky formations under the water, and the water itself is colored like in Lagoa Azul – but there’s also sand, so you might as well stay here. The beach is a small inlet along the northwest coast, maybe one kilometer long in total. The water is clear and calm.

Lagoa Azul

Lagoa Azul. Photo by Isaac Alfonso

Three – the most famous beach by far is Lagoa Azul with magical ambiance and pure, incredibly blue water. There’s no sand here, it’s all lava rock. For nature lovers, this is a great place for birding, with a number of first sights made right here. If you want to see what’s under that magnificent blue water, Club Maxel offers diving expeditions. Also note, that a resort is being built here and there’s talk of making the beach private so be sure to enjoy it before they do.

South Road

If you decide South, you’ll certainly need a rental car or a taxi – there’s no way you’re going to walk to any of these beaches.

 

praia piscina

Praia Piscina. Photo by Saotomean Consulate in Marseille

One – Praia Piscina (90km) close to Roca Porto Alegre plantation and Jalé Ecologe Resort. Just around the corner from Praia Piscina is a lava cave that opens horizontally to the sea. Lava almost closes off the beach from the sea, but for a small part at far end. With high tide waves start pouring over the lava, and the unprotected beach. In the lava pool water is placid, safe from the violent waves battering the other side of the barrier. However when rough seas surge into the cave, mist is forcefully ejected straight out from the small air space above the water line.

Jalé Ecolodge

Jalé Ecolodge. Photo by António Sousa

Two – one of the last beaches is Praia Jalé (95km) with pools and an ecolodge. Ecologe is a number of small huts without electricity. In front of the Jalé Ecolodge Resort. Good place to watch sea turtles.

Threethe last Beach – Praia Xixi. The beach at the end of the road is Praia Xixi (100km). There’s a site by Clara with some tips. This is probably the most exclusive beach on the island, and very few people get here.

More Beaches

So that’s our seven favorite beaches – one in the capital, three in the North, three in the South. If you’re more adventurous, there are many unnamed beaches where the coast is not that easily accessible – and even though there’s a beach – you’ll need machete to get there.

While this time we wrote about the island of Sao Tome, if you’re going to Principe, you’ll also encounter are a number of very beautiful beaches – one of which was even used for a Bacardi ad – these we will cover in the future.

Have you been to any beach on Sao Tome e Principe. Or are You planning to? When you do, let us know it the comments.


16
Mar 10

Alda Graça do Espírito Santo — Katya Aragão’s Special Tribute

This is a special tribute to an iconic Santomean poet, an important figure in the national movement, who has left the Santomean community.

Alda Graça do Espírito Santo

Poet and a great exponent of Saotomean nationalism.

The author of “Trinity” and other verses that inspired nationalism in Sao Tome, Alda Graça do Espírito Santo, died. March is the month of women, but this year saw the loss of a great woman. The poet would have been 84 years old on the 30th of April this year.

She wrote the letters of the national anthem and is a reference to the literature of Sao Tome e Principe. She was a member of the transitional government that led the country from 1974 until independence, July 12, 1975. She was also the minister of education and culture, and later the minister of information and culture. Alda Graça was the first woman to be President of the National Assembly of Sao Tome and Principe. She founded and was president of the National Union of Writers and Artists São Tome (UNEAS).

Last year, she was honored twice. First, by the Ministry of Education and Culture in celebration of her 83 years of age. Then, by the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries. “I think think this is an exaggeration on your part, because I do not think of myself as a monument. The monument is the people, the monument is the country, the monument is what we want to build. In that sense this vanity is something that is not part of me, “said the poet, in April 2009, when she was honored on the occasion of her 83rd birthday.

“Slain was the river of my town”, is one of many legacies she left to us.

 

Água Grande

“Lá no “Água Grande” a caminho da roça negritas batem que batem co’a roupa na pedra. Batem e cantam modinhas da terra.

Cantam e riem em riso de mofa histórias contadas, arrastadas pelo vento.

Riem alto de rijo, com a roupa na pedra e põem de branco a roupa lavada.

As crianças brincam e a água canta. Brincam na água felizes… Velam no capim um negrito pequenino.

E os gemidos cantados das negritas lá do rio ficam mudos lá na hora do regresso… Jazem quedos no regresso para a roça.”


Katya Aragao is a Santomean journalist. Her work has been published in Tela Non and Editora Sol. She is also a beloved radio voice at Rádio Jubilar. This special tribute was first published at Editora Sol and as been translated for publication at SaoTomeBlog.


03
Mar 10

Carlos Alberto Jr.’s Day Out With Fishermen — Gamboa Beach

Fishermen spotting a fish school before throwing the net, on Gamboa beach. Photo by Carlos Alberto Jr.

Today I was on the beach of Gamboa – 10 minutes from the center of São Tomé. There were kids and grownups, but also dogs and pigs. I had never seen a pig taking a swim, but here was one that was taking a bath in the sea. Apart from the pig, there were also fishermen on the sea.

Early Morning

Fishing in Sao Tome and Principe is artisanal. This means fishermen go out to sea several times throughout the day – at night, daybreak, or early morning.

The Fishermen

Each boat in the water carries between six and 12 fishermen. Today they were heading for the vicinity of the Goat Island, Ilhéu das Cabras. One of the men was chosen to dive and identify the fish schools. Then he returned to the surface to tell his companions.

Fishermen circulating a fish school after throwing the net, on Gamboa beach. Photo by Carlos Alberto Jr.

The excitement was great. The navigator fired the engine and began to circulate around the school, while the other fishermen threw the net overboard. After surrounding the fish school, the net was lifted. Sometimes you get a lot of fish. This time nothing.

Fishermen complained about the lack of government support. I wondered why not create a cooperative. They said it is difficult, they need help, and the government does not do what it should. One of them showed an interest in the idea of the cooperative. After five minutes of conversation I devised an entire project – quality fish for export.

Quality Fish for Export

I said they should look for a man they trust, someone who can take the project forward. They asked how to set up a cooperative? I spoke about the Marapa nonprofit which works behind the Embassy of Brazil in Sao Tome, and teaches fish traders to make money with fish parts that used to be thrown in the trash.

Pig dreaming of becoming a surfer, on Gamboa Beach 10 minutes from Sao Tome. Photo by Carlos Alberto Jr.

The fishermen are inscribed in the course and are given lessons by nutritionists. They learn to make fish sausage, fish pudding. Products from the head, tail and other shares of fish that were previously thrown away. Products with added value. More money in their pocket.

I told this story to the fishermen. I suggested they show up at Marapa, and ask for help. I imagined the creation of a brand in they style of – “fish selected from the warm waters of Praia da Gamboa of Sao Tome and Principe”. I imagined an entire transport scheme, with fish supplying European and American markets.

This is Africa

Fishermen looked at me with that unmistakable look, reserved for another crazy white man come to solve the problems of Sao Tome. I left. And the life of fishermen continued as before, in the waters of the Sao Tome and Principe.

Carlos Alberto Jr. is a journalist for TV Brasil, and in the past years has visited and written about 15 African countries. This story was first published in September 2009 in the Diary of Africa (Diario da Africa).


01
Mar 10

The Giant Sun Bird — Conservation of Endemic Species at Obo Park

Óbo

Obo National Park. Photo by Maria Cartas.

Over thirty percent of São Tomé is covered by the Obo National Park. Trails lead through old impenetrable virgin woods of the Obo, deep mountain forest covers the steep slopes of the island, and while some tracks follow old roads or railway, others are only someones footsteps.

Larger tracks used to be for the transportation of coffee and cocoa, while the smaller paths seem to surge right out of an age-old African fairy-tale. And all the time you’re surround by the most amazing trees and birds.

Birds

São Tomé is a true ornithologist’s paradise. The islands have one of the highest concentrations of endemic bird species in the world. So far 143 species have been counted. The rare endemic species (i.e species that can only be seen on on São Tomé) include the Principe white-eye, São Tomé short tail, Giant Weaver, São Tomé giant sun bird, Maroon pigeon, Dwarf olive Ibis, São Tomé fiscal shrike, São Tomé Paradise-flycatcher, and finally the endangered (an once even though extinct) São Tomé Grosbeak.

dreptes thomensis - selele mangotchi

Giant sun-bird. Photo by Alexandra Fonseca.

While you need to be an expert to sight all these incredible species, there’s a great French guide book by Patrice Christy (edited by ECOFAC) called  “Oiseaux de São Tomé et Principe“. One Portuguese nature photographer, António Guerra, has uploaded a small set of pictures depicting the birdlife of the islands, tagged with species and even location. Also, another good online starting point is this article on FatBirder.

neto de olho-grosso

Principe white-eye. Photo by Alexandra Fonseca.

However, the endemic species are just a small taste; there are also hundreds of non-endemic species out there. For example the African masked-weaver (Ploceus velatus), Malachite kingfisher (Alcedo cristata), Black-headed Heron (Ardea melanocephala), and the Laughing dove (Streptopelia senegalensis).

On the way to Pico de São Tomé

On the way to Pico de São Tomé by Isaac Afonso

Good Birding Locations

Good birding areas in the dense forest in central highlands are around Lagoa Amélia and São João dos Angolares. For lowland forests, the best are São Miguel, Xufexufe and Quija. Drier savannahs are on the north coast between Diogo Nunes and Lagoa Azul.

Conservation

The California Academy of Sciences Herpetologist Robert C. Drewes calls São Tomé and Príncipe a biological gold mine. Drewes talks about the importance of conservation on the islands, and the very high number of endemic species found there. ECOFAC is the local European Union and United Nations sponsored conservation organization, that has set up an ecotourism project in the area.

Marine Life

Apart from birdlife, Sao Tome is also rich in marine life. Marine biologist and zoologist Artour has a wonderful set of local smaller marine and terrestrial animals from crabs to worms to insects, all with good descriptions and with species names tagged in Latin (see below). And Joaquim Muchaxo and Alexandra Fonseca have a nice group of photos from their trips with various plants, birds, butterflies, insects, and small animals from Sao Tome. Unfortunately in their photos most of the species and locations are untagged.

[flickrslideshow acct_name=”artour_a” id=”72157594309312290″ width=”400″ height=”250″]

Never Been Connected to the Continent

The vegetation in São Tome is special indeed. As the island has never been connected to the African mainland, much of its flora is endemic, for a example the São Tomé giant begonia (up to 3 metres high), several orchids and tree ferns. The Guardian reports that UK scientist have found a previously unknown mushroom that resembles a penis. In the Northern coast there are Baobab trees. There’s a great variety of tropical fruits, including green limes, red chilli peppers, goiabas, and many others. The University of Coimbra Herbarium has an overview of some of the plants found here by Renata Alves.

Science Bloggers

We’ve written about Santomean bloggers previously. For further reading, here’s a number of scientists that are blogging about their findings on Sao Tome, including Ricardo LimaMariana (in Portuguese), and the California Academy of Sciences.


25
Feb 10

Danço-Congo in a Nutshell — An Introduction to Santomean Theatre

Danco Congo. Photo by Secretary of Culture of Brazil

This post part of a series, in which we try to understand the essence of theater in São Tomé e Príncipe.

A lot of music and dancing in Santomean theater, almost to the point that for a moment I thought I was writing an article on Santomean dances – we will see why this is not the case.

 

There’s quite a number of popular theater pieces in the archipelago, including the Tragedy of Marquis of Mantua and the Emperor Charlemagne, better known as Tchiloli, and Floripes, which is enacted on Principe. But this time we focus on Danco-Congo, which I think is the most colorful.

Danco-Congo

Danço-Congo is a great big show. Mostly enacted on religious holidays, for example during the Gravana Arts Festival every month of August. The full title of the piece is The Tragedy of Captain Congo (Tragédia do Capitão Congo).

There’s a great story to the dance. For me this is the key point what makes Danco-Congo so theatrical. The story is rooted in a Congolese folktale, starting when an old plantation owner dies, leaving the roca (plantation) to his four stupid sons, who quite are inept in managing the farm. Here a clear comparison becomes evident between the sons, and the Angolans, who are depicted as strong and brave. This piece was prohibited by the Portuguese during colonization. I guess they didn’t appreciate their portrayal.

Canal Santola says, this is the most African of all the Santomean dances. Donald Burness says it’s a warrior dance. Caroline S. Shaw says it’s a ritual and a spectacle. Without any academic credentials whatsowever, I say it’s a great piece of theater.

Kids in green outfits taking part of the Danco-Congo. Photo by Tourism Office of Sao Tome and Principe

So What Does it Look Like?

In a nutshell, if you were on Sao Tome in August, you would see a group of about 30 dancers with great big hats.

The dancers are guided by a king, accompanied by drummers, and a number of other colorful characers. Everybody has fitting costumes. Some dancers are on stilts. There are lunatics going crazy. And a dying angel, and also singing angels, all dressed in green colors. Sounds pretty cool, right?

But there’s even more – a wicked sorcerer, his apprendice, and finally the devil himself, who are dressed in bright red dress. The sorcerer is fittingly terrifying!

So this was a introduction to Danco-Congo. If you’re hungry for more, the excellent African Folklore Encyclopedia by Philip M. Peek and Kwesi Yankah, gives a great in depth description – and you can even buy it on Amazon, although at sky high prices, which is why I recommend you come back to SaoTomeBlog for more.


17
Feb 10

Maria-Joao Pombo’s ‘Pilolo Atomico’ — Short Guide to Santomean Restaurants

Café & Compania

Café & Compania. Photo by António Sousa

This is the first in a series of posts about Santomean cuisine, and the restaurants where you can enjoy a good meal of Kalulu, accompanied by local Rosema beer.

 

Café e Companhia

Pilolo Atomico. Photo by Inna Moody

Cafe & Compania

Probably the most famous place to hang out in Sao Tome is Cafe & Compania. The owner Maria-Joao Pombo has good coffee, sandwiches and the famous Pilolo Atomico (a local ecological answer to Viagra, served as a drink). It’s even got a BBC article by Maimouna Jallow who lived on the islands for a couple of years, and another take on Boise Weekly.

Kalulú de Peixe

Kalulú de Peixe, a national dish with delicious fresh fish and spinach. Photo by Robert Grant.

In the Capital

Other restaurants in the capital include O Pirata, Bigote, and Esplanada Jasmine (per Chika Umeadi a good place for pizza). Also Os Dois Pinheiros, Paraiso dos Grelhados and Dona Teté. A number of restaurants include Portuguese style cooking. Seafood is widely eaten, including squid, shellfish, wide range of locally caught fish, such as barracuda. Meat is served in small pastries as a snack.

If you read Portuguese, have access to the ingredients, and want to try out your cooking skills, there’s a number of Santomean recipes on Canal Santola.

Outside the City

Outside the city, in Angolares, the best place to eat is Roça Sao João ran by the famous TV Chef and Entrepreneur João Carlos da Silva of Teia D’Arte fame. Adrobat has a great post with pictures from various restaurants and bars around town.

Going Out After

If you feel like going out after a good meal, there are a good number of discos in the capital, including Africana, Kizomba, and Beach Club (part of the Pestana resort, ask for Ricardo the manager who speaks good English). Outside the capital,  you’re best off just asking around if there’s a party somewhere tonight.