Subscribe to Granta today

Dispatches from Ambassador to Brazil, Earth


Today we launch the Online Edition of The Best of Young Brazilian Novelists with the first two in a series dispatches from an alien ambassador to Brazil back to his home planet, by Juan Pablo Villalobos. You can read the second round of dispatches, here.


OK, guys, before beginning, here is a very important thing you should know about Brazil: the people here don’t speak Spanish. The Brazilian taxi-man said to me: what the hell are you talking? Are you Argentinian? And why are you so . . . green? This was the moment I learned another very-important-thing about this place: in Brazil it is crucial not to be Argentinian. Add that to our Earth mission’s proceedings manual under the topic ‘Cultural Affairs’.

I arrived at the European Space Operations Centre at Darmstadt, Germany on schedule but the problem was getting to Brazil by the train to Frankfurt and then the flight to Lisbon and then the Portuguese people and then the flight connection to Brasilia and then the Brazilian taxi man that slapped my face because of my perfect Argentinian Spanish. But then yes I arrived yesterday night to our Operations Centre in Brasilia, I mean: at my room in the hotels sector.

Brasilia is just like the cities on our Planet: there is a huge sky (but blue, of course) and a lot of steam clouds and big asphalt avenues dedicated to the transport of the humans, who remain trapped in vehicles most of the day. The city, like ours, is under the ground. At least that is my conclusion, because last night, travelling from the airport to the hotel there was no city over the surface of the Earth. There are these buildings like ours but they seem to be dedicated to governmental affairs and not to living humans.

Wait a minute: humans are knocking at the Operations Centre door.

OK, guys, this is interesting: the city is there, the Brazilian man who wanted to change the sheets of my bed just told me that. I asked if the city was under the ground and he looked at me with a strange face (but different to the face of the taxi-slapping-man) and said to me: the city is there! And he pointed to the window. I went over and took a look at the sky and the clouds and some gigantic buildings like space ships and asked again: where? And he said: Porra! Você está maluco? That, according to the instant translator that I already readjusted to Brazilian Portuguese means: F . . . Are you crazy?

I will have to investigate the actual location of the city later. Now lets talk about our mission. In the next days I will have This was the moment I learned another very-important-thing about this place: in Brazil it is crucial not to be Argentinian. meetings with the Brazilian authorities and the trips to São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. Tomorrow I will present my credentials to the Spatial Special Affairs Minister and ask him to meet President Dilma to explain our projects for the 2014 Earth time Football Cup and 2016 Earth time Olympic Games. I have to say that it will not be easy: Today at breakfast I saw the ambassador of the green Planet (bastards) and two guys I think are maybe Plutonians (double bastards). We are too late probably to make the deals. But as our proceedings manual says ‘never is never too late’ in Brazil because they are always late and they are last-minute champions.

One thing we will have to discuss is about the money, because Brazil is too f . . . expensive. I spent on the taxi, hotel and tipping lots of Brazilian humans 82,56 per cent of our budget. So: send lots more money.

New news tomorrow.

P. S. You have to know that there is a new Earth law that forces us to translate the dispatches to English so the Americans and the British can read them. So, please don’t write me back nasty stuff, I don’t want to be ashamed.


Hi galera! How are things going there?

Today I hired the Brazilian human helper for our mission. Everybody calls him Zé Mané, though I think his actual name is José Manuel. As our proceedings manual states, I told him I am the cultural and business delegate from Wales and, as predicted, he said: Wales . . . ? Hum . . . Where exactly is Wales? Welsh people are like you, I mean, half green? Or are you sick?

So, confirmed. Wales is the perfect alibi.

Zé Mané drove me to my first meeting at the Intergalactic Bureau, held in the basements of the Planalto Palace. Talking about basements I have to say that the city of Brasilia is not underground. It is overground and it is futuristic old-fashioned, like the dream of a Plutonian architect one million light years ago (the same damned Plutionian architect that built our cities during the colonization).

Brasilians have some kind of architectural king or dictator, that is, by the way, a Methuselah?: a Brazilian human called Oscar Niemeyer. He is more than one hundred Earth years old, which is a lot by human standards. You can have two opinions on Niemeyer: 1) I love Niemeyer, he is a genius and so on . . . or 2) F . . . Niemeyer, he is a F . . . lunatic etc. But Brasilians are nice humans that talk of architecture like common beings talk of music, football or – untranslatable –.

The event at the Intergalactical Bureau was the monthly meeting of the Brazilian-Universal business committee and there were all the ambassadors, not just the greens (bastards) or the Plutonians (double bastards) but the pinkies, the black-holish, the other-humans etc.

Surprisingly, I am able of confirm that our species detector concluded President Dilma is a female human although she has this trim and still hair that seems not human. Add her name to our list of clean human politicians and erase it from the other list, after the name of David Cameron.

In brief, in her speech President Dilma said that if other planets want to do business with Brazil we will have to make huge-enormous-tremendous-very-big-offers because of the European economic crisis. Seems like our more dangerous competitors will not be the Plutonians (double bastards) but the Spanish and the Portuguese who need urgently to close deals with developing-Earth-countries to get the money back to Europe.

After that, the pretentious imperialists and double bastard Plutonians asked President Dilma for permission to use their teleporters, as traffic in Brazil is worse than Dante’s hell. President Brasilians have some kind of architectural king or dictator, that is, by the way, a Methuselah?: a Brazilian human called Oscar Niemeyer. Dilma denied saying that it will be risky for the secrecy of our relationships. Black-holish supported the petition, asking if Brazilian-humans have ever thought that one day very soon all the vehicles will be stuck behind one another and the movement will cease. Plutonians insisted arguing that they are using teleporters in other Earth-countries like México, but President Dilma just answered: Let’s be serious, México doesn’t have laws. So we will have to continue using lots-of-time and cars and Zé Manés.

By the way, I activated the human race detector on Zé Mané and it broke down. It began saying he was Tupí, then Italian, then Japanese, then African, then German, then Spanish and then it went bad. Like he is mestizo, blue-slanted eyes, straight hair, big nose etc., I asked him about his ancestors. He said he was Tupí, Italian, Japanese etc., and finally cried: Eu sou Brasil, cara!, which means: I am Brazilian, dude!

But after a few cachaças (I will send a special dispatch about cachaça in the future) I found out that in cultural affairs Zé Mané and the Brazilian-humans are just like us: they say Brazil is the country of the future, they complain all the time about the government; they cry for the lost occasions and they love Europe and the United States while they shit on the Portuguese colony just like we do on Plutonians. I was a little drunk and I told Zé Mané we are fraternal peoples and he said: Wales is a developing-country? (actually he said: Wales is a third-world-country?), so I had to make up some facts about the history of Wales. In brief: I finished the night with a terrible saudade of our beloved-Planet.

New news soon.

P.S. Please send more money, lots of money: Zé Mané’s salary is like a lawyer’s salary on our Planet.

Next Monday we will publish more dispatches from the alien ambassador to Brazil, by Juan Pablo Villalobos.

The print edition of The Best of Young Brazilian Novelists will be available from 8 November. You can pre-order here or subscribe to receive it before it reaches bookshops.

Down the Rabbit Hole by Juan Pablo Villalobos is published by And Other Stories.

Photo by Fidalgo Dennis.

Comments (52)

You need to create an account or log in to comment.

  1. spotlight123

    Sun Aug 24 18:45:52 BST 2014

    scrapbook paper
    Wow! Such an amazing and helpful post this is. I really really love it. It's so good and so awesome. I am just amazed. I hope that you continue to do your work like this in the future also.

  2. spotlight123

    Mon Aug 25 14:07:58 BST 2014

    Columbus Ohio Live Bands

    I never knew the language was so difficult to learn and is a slight concern I suppose. Still, doesnt put me off. Ostrava sounds good being a university type city and if I was to get in to some kind of teaching that might be an idea to check out Ostrava a bit deeper.

  3. johnrichard

    Sat Aug 23 10:42:54 BST 2014

    Great tips and very easy to understand. This will definitely be very useful for me when I get a chance to start my blog. tickets are available online and on the cover of the September issues of Nebraska Farmer.

  4. Sinibaldi

    Mon Oct 22 16:48:26 BST 2012


    In the sound
    of a shadow
    full of happiness,
    near a lonesome
    desire calling
    the present
    and a delicate

    Francesco Sinibaldi

  5. alikhan_095

    Wed Sep 10 11:01:17 BST 2014

    You might comment on the order system of the blog. You should chat it's splendid. Your blog audit would swell up your visitors. I was very pleased to find this site.I wanted to thank you for this great read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post.


    Tue Jun 03 12:45:46 BST 2014

    A activity economist, I actually followed this publish and can see how foolish it is to put a directly extensive range on the chart.

  7. patend

    Fri Nov 01 04:30:10 GMT 2013

    Read More About Venus Factor Diet

    The Venus Variable is John Barbaran's latest exercise specially created for females. The moment the health and fitness marketplace heard that he was releasing yet another work out technique numerous influential authors and bloggers immidiately jumped for the opportunity to jot down an assessment of the software And just after looking at all of the Venus Element reviews that were surfacing there is certainly a person frequent trait that will come across - it is really superior.


    Thu May 29 12:43:49 BST 2014

    A observe of warning, he said the BNP and Jamaat were conspiring to effect the evaluate of war scammers. He said Khaleda Zia was also conspiring to secured.

  9. mathiasQuin

    Sat Nov 30 08:54:52 GMT 2013

    My coder is trying to persuade me to move to .net from PHP. I have always disliked the idea because of the expenses. But he's tryiong none the less. I've been using Movable-type on a number of websites for about a year and am nervous about switching to another platform. I have heard fantastic things about Is there a way I can transfer all my wordpress content into it? Any kind of help would be really appreciated!

  10. ralet

    Tue Dec 03 18:45:49 GMT 2013

    I can recommend you check out to find alternatives to the first response. When you find a result like this or when someone near you has this problem i think that the best thing to do is to treat yourself or that person normally.

  11. magancalvin

    Tue Jul 15 10:37:55 BST 2014

    Easily, the article is actually the best topic on this registry related issue. I fit in with your conclusions and will eagerly look forward to your next updates. Just saying thanks will not just be sufficient, for the fantasti c lucidity in your writing. I will instantly grab your rss feed to stay informed of any updates.

  12. magancalvin

    Tue Jul 15 10:34:26 BST 2014

    Great post! I am actually getting ready to across this information, is very helpful my friend. Also great blog here with all of the valuable information you have. Keep up the good work you are doing here.

  13. Donald Higgins

    Sat Jan 11 17:41:45 GMT 2014

    Probably the worst kept secret in the Division is that I have asked Ambassador Tom Shannon to think the role of Therapist and he has enthusiastically concurred," Kerry proceeded. "Counselor Shannon has actually had a notable thirty-year occupation in the Foreign Service; most just recently as our Ambassador to Brazil and as Senior Expert to me these last months considering that his return from Brasilia.

  14. spotlight123

    Sun Aug 03 14:25:11 BST 2014

    free google play gift cards
    After reading your article I was amazed. I know that you explain it very well. And I hope that other readers will also experience how I feel after reading your article. I feel very grateful that I read this. It is very helpful and very informative and I really learned a lot from it.

  15. spotlight123

    Fri Oct 17 15:05:40 BST 2014

    lace wedding dresses australia
    I have learn some good stuff here. Definitely worth bookmarking for revisiting. I wonder how much effort you place to make one of these great informative web site.


    Thu May 15 09:18:59 BST 2014

    One of the animals is much preferred by many people is a dog. Dogs can make a lot of people become more friendly to human beings.

  17. johnrichard

    Mon Jul 28 12:07:54 BST 2014

    Admire it regarding positioning the comely amuse…I was summary set regarding a manifold regular this…I identified that can peaceful good, employing likelihood, you would perhaps store positioning a immense sum of blogs.

  18. johnrichard

    Sun Jul 27 12:41:32 BST 2014

    Nice information, valuable and excellent design, as share good stuff with good ideas and concepts, lots of great information and inspiration, both of which I need, thanks to offer such a helpful information here.

  19. hanoi435

    Thu Jul 24 06:35:02 BST 2014

    thank because those things you say in the article, it very interesting

  20. Magic

    Tue Jun 03 22:43:23 BST 2014

    It's nearly frightening to look at exhaustion issues and all the harm that most are compelled to take care of brazil vs croatia. It's hard to imagine we'll be looking at Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo or Luis Suarez at their greatest during the tournament, as the exhausting and long season has cost them dearly . The Croatian squad doesn't seem to have those sorts of issues except for the left back spot. That position is news that is bad, but looking at another national teams, there's plenty.

  21. spotlight123

    Tue Oct 14 10:10:00 BST 2014

    noleggio auto in aeroporto
    This is just the information I am finding everywhere. Thanks for your blog, I just subscribe your blog. This is a nice blog.

  22. johnrichard

    Mon Aug 04 13:54:37 BST 2014

    This is such a great resource that you are providing and you give it away for free. I love seeing blog that understand the value. Im glad to have found this post as its such an interesting one! I am always on the lookout for quality posts and articles so i suppose im lucky to have found this! I hope you will be adding more in the future...

  23. spotlight123

    Sun Oct 19 13:11:56 BST 2014

    App Cost
    I have learn some good stuff here. Definitely worth bookmarking for revisiting. I wonder how much effort you place to make one of these great informative web site.

  24. johnrichard

    Mon Aug 11 13:35:48 BST 2014

    Amazing overcome! I wish to trainee whenever you fix your site, how could i register for your weblog internet site? The consideration made it simpler for me a adequate package. For a nice and a bit more comfortable on this a person's sent out available brilliant clear idea.

  25. johnrichard

    Sun Jul 27 08:15:14 BST 2014

    I am very much confident that this is very nice Posting done by you. I always find you your blog interesting. keep on posting such nice updates as become very important to impact your thoughts and content, the Facebook will give you this platform to show your statistics.

  26. melaniatarver

    Mon Jun 16 12:09:06 BST 2014

    Great post!! The author has really researched a lot on this topic.

  27. johnrichard

    Wed Jul 23 09:14:41 BST 2014

    Excellent read, Positive site, where did u come up with the information on this posting?I have read a few of the articles on your website now, and I really like your style. Thanks a million and please keep up the effective work.


    Mon Jun 30 07:34:18 BST 2014

    Those that are offensive or abusive will be edited or removed and we reserve the right to suspend the accounts.

  29. michael54

    Sat Jul 05 14:30:35 BST 2014

    L'assistant est une unité merveilleuse qui porte un manteau bleu en fonction de cette mesure et une ceinture de cuir avec fermoir or et des bottes brunes.
    L'assistant est très semblable à l'archer, car il utilise une attaque variée et peut tirer sur les surfaces murales. tire des boules de feu qui font des dommages supérieure, mais il a besoin d'aide car il a relativement peu de points de vie et peut facilement être tué par les défenses.

  30. alikhan_095

    Tue Jul 01 13:16:29 BST 2014

    I’m excited to uncover this page. I need to to thank you for ones time for this particularly fantastic read !! I definitely really liked every part of it and i also have you saved to fav to look at new information in your site.

  31. grossir65

    Thu Oct 02 18:32:05 BST 2014

    Problèmes sexuels se transforment en prélèvements souvent une cause d'anxiété dans un homme. Certains d'entre leur apport peuvent éprouver des conséquences tragiques en ce qui concerne leur confiance en soi et l'estime de moi en cause du soucis sexuels comme la taille du pénis veule. <a href="">grandir son pénis</a> pilule d'allongement du pénis

  32. spotlight123

    Thu Oct 09 07:11:17 BST 2014

    outdoor wooden cubby playhouse
    Hello there! This article couldn't be written any better! Looking at this post reminds me of my previous roommate! He always kept preaching about this. I am going to forward this post to him. Pretty sure he'll have a great read. Thank you for sharing!

  33. johnrichard

    Wed Aug 20 11:57:12 BST 2014

    Amazing overcome! I wish to trainee whenever you fix your site, how could i register for your weblog internet site? The consideration made it simpler for me a adequate package. For a nice and a bit more comfortable on this a person's sent out available brilliant clear idea.

  34. galihadiputra

    Thu Oct 16 07:54:16 BST 2014

    ‘Lloyd? But whey di pickney is, eeh? Him is pure crosses. Di good Lord only know di trouble I seen.’ It was his mother’s voice. He stood and turned to meet her. ‘You waan get sick, pickney? Out here inna di pourin rain a nighttime?’ She stood under the brightly coloured umbrella someone had left on the bus. ‘Come. You grandfadda be aaright. You tink di sea can kill him?’ Lloyd walked towards his mother and the shelter of the umbrella and together, they walked through the dark streets of Kingston, the dirty rain water sweeping the streets, masking the smell of sewage, taking the garbage of the city into the sea. Lloyd heard his grandfather’s voice in his mind: I come from a line of fishermen. #

  35. Donald Penner

    Wed Aug 27 16:18:04 BST 2014

    This was a good read! Well done my friend, well done!

  36. spotlight123

    Sat Sep 20 13:28:30 BST 2014

    Import and export services in Nigeria
    Existing without the answers to the Difficulties you've sorted out through This guide is a critical case, as well as the kind Which Could have badly Affected my entire career if I had not discovered your web site.

  37. alikhan_095

    Fri Sep 26 13:01:26 BST 2014

    Truly, this article is really one of the very best in the history of articles. I am a antique ’Article’ collector and I sometimes read some new articles if I find them interesting. And I found this one pretty fascinating and it should go into my collection. Very good work!

  38. AndraJanis

    Fri Sep 26 16:13:43 BST 2014

    Some wonderful celebrations are made with <a href="">contemporary gospel music</a> and fireworks. All holidays and events have a specific theme, but it is the people and the small details that make them be remembered.

  39. spotlight123

    Mon Oct 13 14:02:49 BST 2014

    baertec machine
    Great buy for the price! I received the item in a day or so and I was reliable to complete a photo project I had Been Working on! It shuts the feeding ports Also When They put enough weight on the ring.