Taking the day off Brazilian-style

The hotter it gets outside, the slower people move… It’s a cliché, but it’s true! One state in Brazil even made it a trademark to be slow. On t-shirts, sweaters, coffee mugs, napkins and all other kinds of souvenirs, you’ll find the ‘Ten commandments of Bahia’ printed on them in Portuguese, celebrating the slow pace of life. Here’s the translation!

On the north coast of Brazil lies the state of Bahia, about 1600 km north of Rio de Janeiro. People live a completely different rhythm of life here, not only in the small villages but even in Salvador, the big capital city of the Bahia state. An easy example: the guide that was taking me around Salvador for the day, was actually angry with me for going too fast… True story!  The guide decided to ‘rest’ while I explored the ‘Mercado Modelo’ on my own, an indoor market down by the harbor. That’s where I discovered the T-shirts with the ‘des mandamentos do Baiano’ on them, or the ten commandments of the Baianos. They’re an amusing set of rules, telling you how to live your life Bahian- style. Not all commandments are that funny really, but there’s a few clever ones like 4, 8,9 and 10. A great inspiration if you don’t feel like doing much today…

Bahia T-shirt


The 10 commandments of Bahia

  1. Viva para descansar

Live to rest

  1. Se vir alguém descansando, ajude-o

If you see someone resting, join them

3. Ame a sua cama, ela é o seu templo

Love your bed – it’s your temple

  1. O trabalho é sagrado não toque nele

Work is sacred – do not touch it!

  1. Adore seu trabalho, fique horas olhando para ele;

Worship your work by looking at it for hours

  1. Descanse de dia para poder dormir a noite

Practice your rest during the day so that you can sleep better during the night

  1. Coma, durma e quando acordar descanse

Eat, sleep and rest when awake

  1. Não esqueça, trabalho é saúde, deixe-o para os doentes

Working is good for your health, so leave it for the sick

  1. Quando sentir vontade de trabalhar, sente-se e espere que ela passa

When you feel like working, take a seat and wait till it’s over

  1. Nunca faça amanhã o que você pode fazer depois de amanhã.

Don’t do tomorrow what you can still do the day after tomorrow.