Today, sparkling in the summer sun, the Shard looks stunning, splitting the London skyline like a gargantuan slice of crystal fallen from space. This fledgling skyscraper is already a cover star. It has replaced the Gherkin as the focal point of the beautiful, stylized helicopter footage that is interspersed throughout Alan Sugar’s BBC program The Apprentice. It is the subject of many, many images on photo-sharing websites such as Facebook and Flickr. The building is now rapidly approaching completion: Its final steel section was lifted into place in March, and it will be inaugurated on July 5.
Depending on your outlook, mixing business with pleasure is either a no-no or the ultimate aim. In Brazil, however, things are viewed a little differently; pleasure is business and vice versa – it’s a national obsession.
From the all-conquering national football team to the rapturous Samba, Caipirinha – national cocktail, the national dish Feijoada – a joyful, slow-cooked concoction of beans with beef and pork; every facet of the Brazilian psyche oozes enjoyment.