Lazy day and Lapa street party
25.01.2013 34 °C
I forgot to mention that on the evening of Day 1 we saw a dead, headless, fully feathered chicken in a bowl on the pavement near our hostel. No one around, no houses close...odd?!
Anyway! This morning we had breakfast while uploading our photos to Google drive, looking at bus routes and booking hostels for the rest of trip in Brazil and for our first night in Argentina. A relaxing morning, and I think we started to feel more like 'travellers' as we could help the new English people out with simple thing like buses, taxis and where the nearest cashpoint was. We had lunch at the hostel to save money, Andrew made noodles in the "death trap" kitchen - slight exaggeration, I think he just had a problem lighting the hob!
We decided to spend the afternoon at the beach so off we went to the Metro, asked for two tickets to Ipanema and Andrew opens his empty wallet! Oops. Back to the hostel and luckily it was not lost, just in his other shorts. Back at the Metro we buy tickets, easily get through the barrier, now we knew how, and got on the train. We were feeling quite cocky until we got the next stop and realised we'd gone the wrong way!
When we finally got to the beach and it was unbelievably hot - we hadn't checked the temperature all day but as we were leaving the beach at 6pm it was still 34 degrees. Hiding under an umbrella (from a seller who told us it cost five reais, then later tried to charge us ten - NO! *puts a strong palm out in front of body in a 'fuengirola lift situation' fashion*!), Andrew made friends with a Brazilian man called Rafael, who we talked to for about 2 hours non-stop - in English of course! He wanted to learn from us and he taught us some Portuguese words that I probably can no longer remember and introduced us to his friends Jacquelina and Alex. So far everyone had been so nice to us and made it really easy for us to talk to people and understand everything.
There was a free concert in Lapa that evening with samba music so we thought it would be fun to head there. First we needed a cheap tea (dinner for our southern readers!), so we found a pizza place - there seems to be so many Brazil so far? - and for only £7 we got one big enough to share one. The waiter had no English and I had no Portuguese but together we got there! By pointing and saying Portuguese words I thought were vaguely right After the last couple of days, and I know we've said this before, but we do really want to learn another language.
We jumped in a taxi to Lapa as we were told this was the safest route and not very expensive at all. There were taxis, buses and people everywhere. Walking round to where the stage was, we were over 200 metres away from it when we hit a wall of people. It was 11.30pm, still 30 degrees and we were surrounded by tens of thousands of people having a street party. The sellers and stalls were running out of beer and water, the heat from the barbecues was stifling and we could barely hear the music. And I definitely couldn't see what was happening of the stage! People were buying drinks from the shop and ice from sellers, then carrying them in the bag of ice to keep their drinks cool - if we could have got through the crowds to the shop, we would have done that too.
With all that said though, it was a crazy experience and again, definitely worth going to see what it was all about. Andrew said it was like the Morecambe Light and Water show back in the day!! Obviously a lot smaller(!), but the idea is the same, and I can imagine if you were there with a big group of friends you could have stayed all night talking, drinking and dancing...
P.s. sorry for the lack of photos in this blog, we were lazy in the day and didn't want to take it to Lapa for safety!