Odds and Ends

Odds and Ends

Day 15

Another rainy day here in Rio.  Another trip to the Federal Police still ahead of us.  I think it will finally be the last one until we fly home.  Hopefully.

On the food front, Kevin, Joe, Keia, and I tried a “por kilo” churrascaria place a few nights ago.  It’s definitely the way to go!  It’s essentially the same sort of restaurant I described from Saturday with a buffet and all sorts of meats and sides, but if you don’t want to pay for “All you can eat” there’s another option.  You can pile food on a plate, weight it, and go back as many times as you please (weighing each time and adding to the cost) until you finally pay per gram/kilo you ate at the end of the meal.  I think I spent about $10 USD in the end on as much sushi, salad, and other odds and ends as I pleased.  Also, thank you for the recipes!  My next attempts in the kitchen will include Smashed Beans and a delicious-looking lime, fish, and shrimp dish from Epicurious.

Last night I dragged Keia all over Copacabana to try and play volleyball, only to find futevôlei on most of the courts.  It’s going to take some courage to put myself out there for either I think.  Everyone here seems athletic and sort of naturally talented at beach sports.  The city sort of encourages you to work out what with nice running paths along the beach, brightly-colored workout contraptions in all of the parks, and hard-bodies everywhere.  It’s really interesting: our Portuguese teacher the other day was talking about the fact that heroin addiction is pretty much literally non-existent here in Rio.  She explained it is because people want to look good on the beach, and it would be horrifying to have track marks on your arms.  There’s a semi-organized volleyball meet-up Thursday night so I plan to try again soon.

Afterward, some friends from CouchSurfing (which I think I’ll just refer to as CS in the future) met us at a quiosque on the beach and convinced us to hang out with them at a club in Ipanema that had no cover charge before midnight.  Had I not been dressed in a sweatshirt and gym clothes, it might not have felt quite so awkward.  The bar scene in Charlottesville is slightly more…. lax, to say the least.

I found some random photos on my iPhone today from the day we climbed Arpoador.  A lot of surfers hang out in the cove that Arpoador forms where it meets Ipanema.  When we climbed to the top of the rock overlooking the point where all the surfers float about waiting for waves, Joe thought he saw a little animal floating around in the water with them.  It turns out it was a PENGUIN!  Joe surfs most mornings before class now and said he sees at least one or two every time.  Apparently, there exist a larger percentage of warm weather penguins in the world than cold weather ones.  Who’dathunk?

Today I made a collage on my bed-ceiling (underneath the bunk that’s on top of me) with some photos I’d brought from home.  I don’t think anyone will find it there.  If I stuck it on the wall, I’m fairly sure I’d get a talking-to about it, and I’m fairly sick of those.  Toilet paper can’t go in the toilet here because the pipes can’t handle it, we can’t have visitors over because it endangers other people’s things, we shouldn’t be in Joe’s room because that floor is only for men… it goes on.  I miss everyone a lot!

Saturday we are looking at a whirlwind packet of all the touristy-things there are to do in Rio packed into 9 hours for about R$170.  It includes Pão de Açucar (including riding in the cable car up to the top), some museums and church tours, a churrascaria lunch, plus seeing the Cristo at Corcovado.  If we do go, I’ll pray for good visibility and might even risk bringing my good camera because the photos from these places are always amazing.

Love, Molly

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