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Interview with H.E.Mr.Paolo Wolowski, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Brazil
05 March 2010

Your Excellency, what are your best impressions from Bulgaria and your travels, in particular?
 
I’ll keep wonderful memories from your country and everything I’ve experienced here. I wish I could visit more places and most of all - the Bulgarian Black Sea coast. In 2010 we plan to visit Bourgas and Belogradchik. I and my wife feel very cozy in Bulgaria and among the Bulgarian people.
 
Do you have a favorite place or destination in Bulgaria so far?
 
I should mention that Bulgaria offers quite many astonishing and fascinating places. However, my favorite one is located on 6, Veliko Tarnovo Str. – the residence of the Brazilian Embassy. Beautiful beaches set in close proximity to Varna and Varna itself come second. I like very much Veliko Tarnovo and Arbanasi village.
 


H.E.Mr.Paolo Wolowski and Mrs.Lygia Wolovski
photos by Ivan Peykov

Which is your favorite Bulgarian dish or wine?
 
I’m great admirer of quality Bulgarian wines, the unique and incomparable yogurt from Gintsi village, Petrohan, Snejanka salad, etc. Interesting fact is that here, in our residence we prepare Snejanka salad with other root crops such as beet or carrots for instance. I like banitsa very much, especially the one made the traditional recipe of Varna by a friend of mine – Milena Stoycheva.
 
Please, share with our readers the recipe of your favorite Brazilian dish.
 
Bahia cuisine is my favorite – fish Moceca, Acaraje, Bareado - typical for my hometown of Parana. Here is a Vatapa recipe by Rio Minho restaurant in Rio de Janeiro's Old Downtown:
 
Inredients:
 
½ kilo dried shrimps
½ kilo fresh cleaned, deveined and tails removed shrimps
2 boxes of coconut cream
1 bottle of coconut milk
½ cup requeijão (white cream cheese prepared from ricota, butter, salt and warm milk)
½ cup freshly granted coconut
1 bunch of fresh Cilantro (coriander)
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 chili pepper, finely chopped
6 tomatoes, minced
1 clove of garlic, minced
salt, paper
6 salty breads soaked in ½ l. water
1 cup of corn starch
½ cup of dende oil (palm oil)
½ cup of olive oil
 
Preparation:
 
Fry garlic and onion in olive oil. Add dried shrimp, and then fresh, cooked to redness. When you acquire a golden color, pour washed ½ liters of water in bread, add 1 box cream and corn starch, dissolved in water. Add green spices, chopped tomatoes and peppers. Add coconut milk and cook for another 15 minutes. Finally, put fresh grated coconut, basil and leave it for 5 more minutes, stirring with a wooden spoon until it begins to come off the bottom of the pot. Finally put in dende oil, which must be pre-heated almost to boiling. Stir slowly and let it turn for 2 minutes. Once ready, add the other box with cream, stirring slowly. Salt with remaining grated fresh coconut and decorate with whole shrimp.
 
Dear Sir, with which of the symbols of Brazil you never part when you travel abroad?
 
The statue of Jesus Christ and Ipanema beach; my favorite Flamengo football club and Portela Samba School of Rio De Janeiro.
 
Is there any personality or event who/which has strongly affected your character?
 
Almost all my bosses in the Ministry of External Relations of Brazil since my arrival there in 1971. I would like to mention the following ambassadors (most of them are no longer among us) André Mesquita, Alarico Silveira, Geraldo Sillos, Alcides Guimarães etc.; some great friends of mine as the ambassadors Guilherme Bastos and Paulo Vasconcellos, as well as an employee at the embassy (now retired) Sula Glaser, who taught me everything on Itamarati (known as the Ministry of External Relations of Brazil ), my parents and my children and, in a very specific way, my grandmother on my mother’s side, Professor Maria da Luz Seiler Veiga, a remarkable figure in the middle of last century in Curitiba, capital of Parana state, including street and city school bear her name, and my wife Lygia Wolovski, who is from Bahia.
 
Your Excellency, which side of your character has been of greatest help to your career?
 
Admittedly, patience and capacity for understanding and accepting different realities.
 


 Inside the residence  photos by Ivan Peykov

Are there any common features between the Bulgarian and Brazilian people?
 
Yes, very much indeed. For example the “Mediterranean” flavor of both countries. Brazil is the perfect example of race mix and Bulgaria could be defined as the „passage way” of history, a true combination of all people crossed it land for centuries.
 
Dear Sir, please tell us more about the Festival of Brazilian Culture, organized by the Embassy of Brazil for a second consecutive year.
 
When I first arrived in Bulgaria, the country has just joined the EU. That affected the trade between two countries. The trade exchange between Brazil and Bulgaria dropped dramatically, at least in short term, in comparison to 400 million dollars in June 2007.
 
Thus it was necessary "to invent" something temporarily to offset the big trade loss.
 
At the same time, the honorary consulate was established in the city of Varna. Its climate and people’s attitude remind me of coastal cities in southern Brazil, especially those in the state of Santa Catarina. Can be said to add the traditional conduct of various festivals in the sea capital of Bulgaria, in August.
 
All these factors along with the support of the Brazilian Government through the Ministry of External Relations, Cultural Department, and the unquestionable cooperation, goodwill and effectiveness of the Honorary Consul of Brazil in Varna, Mr. Mihail Mihov, led to the realization of the first Festival of the Brazilian Culture, held in Varna in 2008. It was a great success and gained significant popularity among the Bulgarian citizen and media. As a result we decided to organize second festival in 2009.
 
During the festival, showing different aspects of Brazilian culture such as classical music (pianist Cristina Ortiz), popular music (Teresa Cristina & Semente Group, Fabiana Cozza) and Bulgarian singers and musicians whose repertoire enter bossa nova, and as Pavleta Semova, Brazil Accoustics group and students of the department of music at the New Bulgarian University, headed by Prof. Ilian Paraskov; culinary chefs as Beto Pimentel and Zhoelma Silva and Mara Alkamim; dance and percussion (Claudio Kron); musicians as bassist Marcos Valente Junior, artists Rogerio Diaz as "bird painter; film festival, presenting the book Lua da Fonte / Elegia de Varna by Anderson Braga Horta, and unforgettable receptions at the headquarters of the Consulate. I would like to note that in 2009 we had the honor to attend H.E. Mr.Georgi Parvanov, President of the Republic of Bulgaria.
 
What will you leave behind after your mandate in Bulgaria expires?
 
I hope to leave here friends as well as some kind of contribution to the closeness of Brazil and Bulgaria, and the understanding of these both realities.
 
    
Inside the residence  photos by Ivan Peykov
 
Would you like to send a brief message to the Bulgarian people?
 
Yes, in response to your request, I would like to leave a message for warm feelings of the Brazilian people and Government, me personally and my wife, who accompanied me in this mission.I leave my best wishes and still hope that the Bulgarian people and the Government will find the true place of your country in the bosom of the European community as a desirable objective of the Bulgarians, especially nowadays.
 
In conclusion I could not mention the excellent co-operation that exists between the Embasy of Brazil and ADIS Real Estate. A tradition dating back the initial opening of the Embasy of Brazil here, in Bulgaria, by the time of  the Bureau of Diplomatic Corps service. We both are aware that the residence of Brazil in Sofia is a cultural monument and therefore should give our best efforts in preserving and maintaing in in the best possible state. Our mutual co-operation is revealed in our everyday contacts we maintain  with the management and the team of Domestic Diplomatic Properties Agency and especially with Chief Broker Elka Pankova

 

This interview is produced solely to ADIS Magazine. No part of this interview may be reproduced in any other way without prior written consent of ADIS Real Estate.

 

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