I've been in Rio now for about a week. I've had a great time. I'm not entirely sure how to sum it up, except to say that I've had an awesome time. When I got here, Lan Chile, the airline that I took to get here, lost my bags. They left them in Sao Paulo, while I went on to Rio. Not only that, it took them 4 days to get my bags to me, which meant that while I was able to borrow shirts and stuff from my cousin, I spent 6 days in the same underpants. I hope I never have to go through that again! I didn't tell my Mum at the time, as I knew that she would panic. In fact, I still haven't told her, so she'll probably find out by reading it here. Hi Mum!
Last time Rap was here he met a local named Fabio, who took us around and showed us the place and generally made sure that we had a great time. He even organized a house party for our benefit at his house, and invited around 50 of his friends and neighbors, all of whom were more than happy to spend time getting to know us despite the fact that they know next to no English, and we know next to no Portuguese. I've since learned quite a bit of the language though, and am able to converse to a fairly extensive degree with the locals. Its my first small taste of bilinguality, and I must say, I'm hooked. I'm definitely going to learn another language when I get home.
I must send out a big hello to a CouchSurfer who I have not actually met yet. I spoke to her on MSN and she helped me a lot by giving me pointers and saving me from the tourist traps and dodgy areas. Thanks Gabriela, you rock!
I have taken around 400 photographs. I will be uploading them soon. I haven't seen many of the tourist attractions like Corcovado or Sugarloaf, but I've gotten to know some locals and really gotten a taste of the real flavor of Rio. All in all, this has been one of my most enjoyable travel experiences to date, and I really think I'll be back here some time soon.
I guess I will probably be leaving in 3 days from now, on the 10th September. While I was here, I met a few people who have traveled through Chile, and they say that Patagonia is one of the best places in the world to go hiking or trekking. I would really love to go there. I would have stopped there for a few days if I had the time, but Ramadan is coming up and I want to be home for that. As I said, however, I am definitely coming back to South America, and I will stop in Chile then for a week or two to go trekking in Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego.
So that about covers my adventures in Brazil for now, I'll post another update in a few days, perhaps on the day I leave, with a final recap. I'll also start uploading my photos over the next few days. Until them meus amigos! Tchau!