First a few words about last week. I arrived in Rio de Janeiro 17th of September. The main reason for going, was the opening party for Arctic Securities new department in Rio. The office had an amazing view overlooking Copacabana and the Statue of Jesus. The opening party was packed, and I think the 15 leaders from the oil and gas industry, participating in a simul against me, as well as the spectators, enjoyed the chess part of the event. For the rest of the week I was happy to be able to use the Arctic office for chess training. In Rio I also got the chance to enjoy beach life, great food and even a football match (Botafogo - Flamengo).
At the same time, the "Rock in Rio" festival was on. TC Høiseth, who works for Arctic in Rio, managed to set up a chess session with me and the band Red Hot Chili Peppers. Playing against the legends of alternative rock, with the band Snowpatrol watching was fun. The level of their game was quite good and they told me that they used to play chess while touring.
It was good to arrive in Sao Paulo on Saturday. The Itaim district is very nice and it reminds me a bit of Greenwich Village in NYC.
The opening ceremony at Sunday was good with a lot of prominent speakers. I was impressed by the number of young chess fans taking part.
I had black against the current World Champion, Vishy Anand, in first round today. I played the Berlin defence and achieved a comfortable draw. Tomorrow I’ll have white against world no. 3, Levon Aronian. I hope for an interesting fight!
Sao Paulo, 26th of September,