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Sunday, August 31, 2008

More about things to do in Rio

It was Sunday morning in Rio and raining very hard. What to do?
We went to the Municipal Theater in downtown - central - Rio. (Theatro Municipal do Rio de Janeiro) for an eleven am concert. OSB Jovem or Orquestra Sinfonica Brasileira (The Brazilian Youth Symphony.) It cost one Real and a wait of twenty minutes in a line in the rain to get in. I would say this is the number one entertainment bargain in Rio.
The orchestra of young people (students of music) plus several pieces played by an all drum band was an enjoyable way to pass a wet morning. The theater is under renovation but truly beautiful. The main staircase in white marble is breathtaking, the gracefully curving handrail is made of green marble. This building is a must see in Rio.
The people in the photo are all strangers - I waited to get a clear photo of the stairs but all the other visitors to the Theater were eager to take their photos also so I gave up - Hope no one sues me for using their picture on the blog.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Things to do in Rio

There are the obvious activities in Rio; eating, drinking, walking on the beach, getting sunburned on the beach, walking the lagoa, taking tours, hiking.... okay enough! But the not so obvious activities - the things you have to know were to look to find out about - are sometimes the most interesting activities if you live here or stay for an extended time.
These activities are the ones that Camillo and I seemed never to find. Now that Sissi and Antonio are here in Rio and are eager to do new things all of the time, and seem to be plugged into how to find out about the intellectual side of Rio, we have been finding out about concerts and movies and special art shows. We have actually gone to 3 nighttime shows in the past two months - a record for us.
Last week after leaving one of our favorite lunch spots, they took us to a book store in Ipanema that has brochures that advertise local events. The LIVRARIA LETRAS EXPRESSOES IPANEMA on RUA VISCONDE PIRAJA 276 has out in open view at the front desk many brochures for the public. For example, Agenda Viva Musica! 36 pages of musical events, by the month, open to the public, often gratis, and additional information about featured events and the artists. We also found the Mapa dos artes Rio de Janeiro - a clear, easy to read map of the city indicating the locations of permanent museums and special art show venues. It includes a cross referenced numerical list with descriptions of the museums, including a brief history. These two guides are full of invaluable information for residents and tourist alike.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Tattoos and other reactions

I know that all the expat women in the world have dealt with this problem hundreds of time, but for me this does not help in the least. 'Rio Rose' is finally leaving Brasil. Rosemary and Abel will be moving to Portugal at the end of September. We have been friends and comrades in Blogging for almost 4 years (5?). When I'm down she brings me up and when she is down - well I hope - I help her out. Now what do I do? She will no longer cook for us, she will take her recipes to Portugal and I will WHAT?
To counter this feeling of loss, of panic, of need - I got a Tattoo! Does this seem extreme? For me it isn't. I have always dealt with 'depression' with a new activity, or a new round of diet and exercise, or a few times in the past 'nearly' six years a few days hiding in bed - refusing to eat right - to take care of myself - this time a tattoo seems to me a much healthier effort to change how I feel. So I dedicate my new Tattoo to RioRose and her new adventures in Portugal. (Yep, those are freckles - I have faded red hair, green hazel eyes and FRECKLES everywhere the sun hits)

Monday, August 04, 2008

Winter Festival - Nova Friburgo, Brasil (Festival de Inverno 2008)

Every winter sometime in either June / July / or August there is a winter festival in the State of Rio de Janeiro. There are normally concerts, street fairs, street dancing and eco-tourism activities scheduled in Petrópolis, DSC_9747Teresópolis, Nova Friburgo (including Lumiar). (Google Festival de Inverno 2008 for more information).    I planned for one of the hikes scheduled by SESC Rio de Janeiro on Sunday morning (August 3) 

Sunday dawned bright and clear. I wasn't sure about doing this walk, getting up at 6:00 on a Sunday, taking a hike with strangers (Portuguese speaking strangers at that) and I had no clue of where we were going, but I went and I enjoyed. 15 or so of us met at the SESC office in Nova Friburgo, boarded the bus at 8 am and were taken for one hour towards Teresópolis. DSC_9757DSC_9759









This is one of the best choices I have made since living in this country. The hike, taking us through land of small farms, up dirt roads, across horse trails and up some pretty steep grades, took about 4 1/2 hours up to the base of the Three Peeks and 2 1/2 hours down back to the bus, made me once again appreciate the beauty of Brazil.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Fun weekend in Rio - Part 2

That is the second time this week that I posted before I wrote - sad that I must be getting confused.... if you find this blog not complete - come again later! Saturday in Rio - I wanted to walk in the Lapa area just outside of the center and visit the antique stores and Camillo (as usual) wanted to eat leitao 'the best in the WORLD' in the center - so we combined the two. Brazilians love to eat out - literally outdoors. And the more friends the better - we started with plans for 6 and ended up with 10 friends. The leitao can be ordered by portion or in advance the whole pig... but for 8 - we decided by the portion and ended up with enough people to have gotten the complete package.... (Boteco Casual, Rua do Ouvidor.Travessa do Commercio, phone 221 2626.)
  On weekends in this area there are many small places open to the locals - some days there is music on the streets and many people just strolling to enjoy the old buildings (that are slowly being refurbished / restored or in the least painted) and the warm sunshine. This historic part of Rio is quite charming and a must see. Although somewhat tarnished, it hints of the grander that was Rio when the capital of Brazil. The day was clear and beautiful, the food good, and the friends fantastic. After a two o'clock lunch that lasted until well after 4:30, no one wanted to walk in Lapa - I said please 'this was the original plan of the day' so to keep me from being grumpy, we went.
 Everything had closed down and no music - I did get to take several photos of the wrought iron balconies. And I will go back on another early Saturday to see all the action. Instead of taking multiple taxis we all piled into Abel's car and returned to Leblon - everyone was still in the mood for ACTION - there was a jazz festival starting... we stopped to see, walk through the crowds and then hungry and thirsty again went to Rosemary's for wine and cheese. All together was a great day.