It began as a flitting idea, something that sounded great but rather outlandish. Isn’t it every adventure-seekers dream to backpack through South America? Then I started to tell people- “Hey, I would really like to do this.” They replied with ”That sounds great!” or “Yea!!” or “Isn’t that dangerous?” After saying my dream out loud, it almost became tangible, so I started saving. Little by little, year by year. Enter 2012. It was finally time. I couldnt stall anymore, and doubting myself would only lead to failure. I had to do this. And so one week ago, I left my city of Chicago and ventured into the Brazilian life. I landed in Sao Paulo, a mega city home to 20 million people. There was a lot to do, but I needed some time away from cars and skyscrapers. So, I headed to Paraty, a picturesque town on the ocean 6 hours away. It was there that I finally realized I was actually in Brazil and all the other worries just melted into the sand with me. Alas, the days went too quickly and I was due to leave for Rio de Janeiro. A sad parting entailed, and now I am in Rio for a few more days. The time goes so quickly here. I ignorantly wrote down that I would spend three or four, sometimes two or three days in each city… In reality a week would have been better to see everything and not rush as much. The Brazilian culture is fascinating-they are (purposely) never on time, obsessed with fresh juice, soccer (futbol), and soap operas (novelas). However, the divide between the rich and poor is alarming-most easily perceived through the conditions in the favelas versus the electric fenced houses and modern apartment buildings. More about my South American adventure to come!
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