Streets here are kind of created as a second thought for much of the developing sections of the city. Poor people don't own cars, so why make streets a usable width? I have gone down streets here that were only a few inches wider than our car and that turned at odd angles that a typical American would never think of driving up. There are streets that I fear trying to drive a car up, their angles are so steep (wouldn't want to walk up them either) and you have to use 1st gear to get up for the whole length. There is also one somewhere that I swear I will take a picture of someday that continues at a steeper and steeper angle down a hill and abruptly turns into stairs and goes down to a sidewalk below. It's not really a street per-say, but it gets used that way eventually as the area develops and the city sees it fit to pave it with asphalt to try to avoid the typical mudslide situations we get with our rainfall.
I spent 30 minutes in a car trying to move about 40 meters. I was lucky to not have waited more time than that as this was NOT during rush hour. Traffic would sit unmoving, then move up one car's worth, then sit again. The reason for the slow down was soon revealed -
That's a large truck loaded with cinder blocks. This is one of the typical streets that should run one lane in each direction - really only wide enough for one lane in one direction (but Brasilians are amazing at their ability to fit many cars in many directions in places most Americans wouldn't dare to try), not to mention that people park on both sides of the street, halfway onto side walks... or not - it typically slows and speeds up according to how people are driving, parking, and how many bars have put tables into the street for patrons. It is somewhere in Boca do Rio, much of which is a developed/ing lower middle class section of the city. Seems someone was going to build... something... with a lot of cinder blocks. So they hired a truck and the truck brought them and here they sit, parked, on the street, taking up more than half of it. No driver in sight. And it wasn't just one truck, there was another one behind it, also parked in the same fashion. And another. And finally, the real reason for the hold up.
The fourth truck, going the other direction, was trying to park. You can see just beyond, that bus, probably sitting there with no way to get out, just like we were. At least our lane wasn't blocked by 4 trucks loaded with cinder blocks. Our lane of traffic slowly moved on. Their lane, going the opposite direction, just sat and sat. Bumper to bumper. I wonder how long.