Day 112 (aka week 16!)
I’m sorry that it’s been so long since I updated, it’s just that Mom and I have been so busy there has hardly been time! I dropped her off at the airport earlier tonight, so tomorrow resumes classes, meetings, laundry, grocery shopping, and all things normal life. This week was a jam-packed one, so I’m going to let pictures do most of the talking.
Here’s the run-down:
- Monday- Mom flew in early, and I went to pick her up at the airport, studying all the while for the exam I had that night. We came straight back to the pousada and took a quick walk on the beach before I had a Skype interview with Deloitte that afternoon. The interview went well (so second rounds were scheduled for Wednesday), and we grabbed dinner before I headed off to my test.
- Tuesday- I was scheduled to have a phone call with Pearson in the morning, so mom and I had a leisurely breakfast at the house and she went grocery shopping with Keia while I took care of business. Technical difficulties sort of broke up the call, but thankfully Pearson agreed to give me an interview via Skype the next day. With Wednesday filling up, we figured we’d better get out and explore the city a little bit, so we headed to Jardim Botânico for the rest of the day.
- Wednesday- My interview with Deloitte went just alright, I felt like Pearson went really well, and I’m still waiting to hear back from both about next steps. My application for Epic is on hold until I get back to the States, so unless I start passing around my resume again, it looks like the job search is at a bit of a standstill for now. In other news- Charles got a great offer from Microsoft in Seattle! I’m really happy for him and I think he’ll probably accept it. In between interviews that day, Mom and I relaxed on the beach in Copacabana and continued to just settle in and take it easy. That night we had more churrascaria at Carretão! It was fabulous, as per usual, and we were stuffed.
- Thursday- Mom and I started off early to hike the trail in the Tijuca National Forest through the neighborhood of Horto and up to the waterfalls. We packed a small picnic, and stopped for our afternoon expresso afterward in Parque Lage. Everything in that area is just absolutely beautiful.
- Friday- Keia’s and my friend Nayra’s parents came into town. Mom and I also moved from the pousada to a really nice hotel very nearby. We spent the day in Santa Teresa, and then went to meet all of my friends at Nayra’s apartment where her parents cooked us an excellent shrimp dish traditional of Fortaleza and the Nordeste, where they are from.
- Saturday- I had never been to the island of Paquetá in the Guanabara Bay that borders a part of Rio’s coastline. Mom and I decided to go and check it out. It is about an hour and 15 minute ferry ride from Praça XV, and there are no cars on the island so the main forms of transportation are bicycles and horse drawn carriages. We walked along the water until we found a nice place for lunch. When our fried fish came out looking like someone had literally just caught one fresh and dipped the whole thing in boiling oil head to tail we weren’t sure what to expect, but it was delicious! A caipirinha each and a full belly later we mosied over to an old fort on the tip of the island before taking the ferry back to Rio proper at sunset. That night the Salgueiro “Escola de Samba” (Samba School) was having an open rehearsal. Keia and I went with our parents and boy was that the fastest I think any of us has seen someone shake their bottom. While we were there, Keia was picked from the crowd to compete against some other on-lookers for an honorary samba queen title, and I’ll have to figure out how to post the video later on because she won!!
- Sunday- Mom and I returned once more to Praça XV, this time taking the ferry just 20 minutes across the bay to Niteroi. We had a light lunch in the pretty marvelous bistro underneath the MAC (contemporary art museum) before taking a look around inside and then napping on the shore just down the block. We picked up some “agua de coco” (coconut water) afterward, which was the sweetest and most refreshing of any of the coconuts I’ve tried!
- Monday was Mom’s last day, and we had originally planned to beach it. Since it rained a bit the night before and the morning was grey, we decided to do some shopping in Ipanema and Leblon. Mommy bought me the cutest outfit! We really had some good finds before the weather cleared and we got to spend an hour more or less resting on the shore before heading home and getting ready to go to the airport.
My short little description doesn’t really do the whole trip justice. I’ll be sure to add some photos to Mom’s facebook album soon. For now I’ve got to get to sleep and see if I remember what normal life here feels like.