Hello dear friends and families, we are alive and well and hot in Rio de Janeiro!
We arrived in Rio very early Friday morning (22 Feb 2013) and took a taxi straight to our home for the month, in the barrio of Catete. We are living in a house in the center of Rio about a 5 minute walk to Flamengo Beach. Patrick, an expat Artist from France who has been living in Brazil for almost 25 years, has two extra bedrooms that he rents out. The house is small but has two floors with an open courtyard in the middle and the top floor is just our room and a rooftop terrace. Its furnished sparsely and has just the rustic charm that Nick and I were looking for
The first couple of days here were pretty overwhelming! The city is huge and bustling and gives off so many impressions all at once. Even the beaches have a rather hectic feel and get quite crowded! But slowly, the ways of the city are working their charms and we are feeling more and more comfortable here. Now we have been to three beaches: Flamengo, Copacabana, and Ipanema. Each one different from the other and each very telling of the spirit of Rio. Flamengo hosts sun-tanners slurping beer and coconut peddlers, yet barely anyone swims here due to the dirty bay water. Copacabana feels a little bit like Ipanema’s dirty cousin: it’s a little more commercial, less clean, but it’s also where you’ll get the cheaper drinks and eats (as well as real estate). Ipanema’s water is that translucent blue-green you’re dreaming of, it seems to be consistently less trash-filled than Copacabana’s waters, too. Sitting here gazing onto the islands in the distance while sipping a Caiprinha has a very distinct feeling of beach vacation!