The day after the U2 show, I wandered around the extremely cute neighborhood Villa Madalena. I went into cute galleries and stores and, when the owners talked to me, put on my most apologetic face and said, "I don't speak Portuguese well...I'm sorry." (I said this in Portuguese. It's one of the few things I can say.) And they said, "Blah blah blah blah blahdeblah blah blah talk talk talk talk!" I found out later I was pronouncing "sorry" totally wrong, which probably just added to the effect.
Although my speaking is pretty lousy, I did get a lot better at understanding Portuguese while I was there. At one store, the "blahdeblah blah blah" was, "Oh, that's ok, it's nothing to apologize for!" and at another it was, "Well, we make all the clothes here, so just tell me if there's anything you like and we can alter it to fit you."
Romance languages all kind of run into each other for me now. When I was talking to the dude who spoke French before the U2 concert, he mentioned that he also spoke Italian, and I was like, hey, cool, I've taken Italian. So he switched over and I was like, right, I only understand a little, so speak French. But what I said was "Je comprends un poco." Yes, apparently I'd started up my own little hybrid language. Like Esperanto, only dumber.
The first picture is of a little bit of that neighborhood where all the walls are covered in super-detailed graffiti. Here's another street: