We started the new year with every intention of staying in Friburgo all through the month of January but by time the sixth rolled around we were both thanking the powers that be and those family members, who always have a new and better way to celebrate, for a request of a command performance in Rio. Annabella requested that we come to Rio for cake and ice cream and games to help her celebrate her eleventh birthday. Sounded like fun (thank goodness!)
From the 30th of December, when we arrived back in Friburgo until the sixth of January it rained: heavy, wet, cold, cloudy, foggy, mud-slide inducing rain - 24/7. And what better way to get a change in the weather than to drive to Rio. We would drive in on Thursday night, drive to Teresopolis on Saturday for a churrasco with friends, and would be back in Friburgo on Sunday – in time to get back into the eating-carefully and going to the gym-regular mode at the first of the week. It is now late Sunday and we are stuck in Rio. On Saturday the car wouldn’t start and we had to call a mechanic – wait several hours for him to come – missed the time frame for our drive to Teresopolis – missed the plan, but gained two full days in bright and sunny Rio.
On Friday evening we walked part way around the Lagoa, that is a story that needs to be told but you have to wait, maybe even until next Christmas. This morning I walked down to the beach. I don’t know why I don’t do this more often – what benefits I get from walking the length of Ipanema and Leblon, especially after the confinement of a week of rainy days, is without measure. The beach on a sunny summer day is colorful and entertaining, packed with happy, sun browned young people.
On Sundays, one direction of the street running along side the beach is closed to cars. Pedestrian, cyclists, baby strollers often empty of baby who is toddling freely along the road, skate boarders, inline skaters all vie for the space to enjoy their exercise. Today there were also groups of Capoeira fighters, this time all women. As far as I know this is very unusual. I’ve never seen women doing this street fighting (dance) before. From one end of the beach to the other were colored umbrellas, vendors, drummers, volleyball players and energy.
What a way to spend the morning.