I did the US vs Brazil yesterday and here is where Brazil stands against the US.
1. Coconut water. Sure it's all hip to drink coconut water now in the states but that little box does not compare to a freshly opened chilled real coconut.
2. The beach. I thought I knew the beach before Brazil but I was so wrong. Brazilians do the beach the way it was meant to be done! I can't explain it because it is not a technique, it is an experience.
3. Flakiness. While I hate flakes and flaking, it is really nice to be able to flake when you really want to and not be judged. You will get a little shit initially but since everyone flakes on everyone every once in a while there is a certain flexibility to it. I can not go to a friends party and only get shit about it while on the phone with them. Buy them a beer the next time you meet and all is forgotten.
4. Big lunches. It took me a while to get used to having my main meal in the middle of the day but I have now been converted. Sure I still have a sandwich every once in a while but my body much prefers digesting during waking hours instead of trying to do it while I sleep.
5. Flip flops. Sorry folks but Havaianas are the only acceptable brand and yes you should own a variety of styles and colors.
6. Bathing suits. The bikinis may be small but you don't get a saggy butt and you look better all around (not to mention the fact that they really last!) The speedos the men use are flattering and not creepy like the Italians (no offense). That and why on Earth should men be forced to wear long baggie uncomfortable sand catching shorts? So not fair.
7. Brazilian earrings. I love them all, the expensive ones and the ones sold on the street. Sure you may have to sift through some tacky ones but you will still better your collection by far (and usually it's much easier on the wallet).
8. Delivery. You can get everything delivered! Stuck home with a sick kid? Call the pharmacy and have the medicine delivered. Call your favorite neighborhood restaurant and have lunch brought to you. Hell, go to the grocery store and then leave all your goods behind for the store to bring them over by bike. This is a big plus, especially if you cruise around with 2 little ones like I do.
9. Homemade food. Sure I miss food from home but my eating habits have improved greatly. I hardly ever use my microwave and the only frozen food I eat is previously made homemade food frozen so I can use it at a later date. That being said, I am 10 pounds lighter in Brazil without trying. Coincidence? I think not.
10. The people. No offense to my country but people here are friendlier. You can talk to a stranger's kid without being called a pedophile. Actually, if you didn't pat that random kid's head who stepped on your foot you'd more likely be called an ass. Brazilians love company, friends and family. There is always a lunch or event or random meet up. There are no "private space" issues. You kiss on the cheek hello, goodbye, and constantly use endearing terms with everyone. Brazilians just give out love and it is something the rest of the world should try.