Monday, June 23, 2014

Brazil, Part One.

"They have a joy for life in Brazil unlike any country I've ever seen." -
Morena Baccarin

How does one do justice to a nation with mere words or pictures? Nothing I say could capture the experience of the last eight days.

Brazil. Brasil. Salty warm air. Blazing sun. Fierce storms that rolled over the ocean as we scrambled for cover. Chicken hearts on skewers that I could not dare refuse. Coconut water that no Whole Foods can ever replicate. Tapioca flour cakes and cassava. Fresh lobster eaten out of the shell while sitting on the beach. Seahorses slipping through tree roots, as we watched from a boat. Lemurs with lion manes. Ridiculously beautiful waters surrounded by white sand. Luxury like I have never seen before. Hammocks beneath coconut trees. Portuguese, Spanish, English, German, Japanese, Italian, and other languages all flowing freely, interspersed with nods and laughter at the attempts. Motorcycles and bikes weaving through traffic that could make my heart race. Caipirinhas, which have replaced Moscow Mules as my favorite drink. Bairros that took my breath away with the  crushing poverty pushing right up against the shiny stadiums. 'Love' Hotels. Little girls in too much makeup and stiletto heels outside of the stadiums, confirming the worst news stories that I wanted to ignore. The amazing people of Brazil, so patient with our attempts at Portuguese. "Bom dia" and  "Abrogada" and my near constant "Como se... diz en Portuguese." Jaw dropping graffiti that put everything I saw in Europe to shame.

These are a handful of the things that come to mind when I think about Brazil. So many contrasts, so much beauty intertwined with extreme poverty. I am still trying to wrap my brain around all that I saw, without even broaching the unbelievable World Cup matches. I will get to those in time :)

Boa noite, meus amigos. Paz e amor e agua de coco. XO

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