Finally I made it to the most anticipated country of my entire trip...BRAZIL. There were constant difficulties in getting my visa, but thank the universe for Uruguay where I was able to get it through in 48 hours. I was moving at such a fast pace that no consulate would issue the visa for me unless I was there a minimum amount of time. As well Argentina you needed to book an appointment to even talk about getting your visa..that was 3 weeks away! There were times when I had to tell myself "ok Jess you've done well and seen a ton of places, Brazil will just have to be next on the list of places to see" I was quite upset and losing hope but sure enough everything worked out perfectly as usual!
I know for sure I have unfinished business with Brazil. I would love to explore the entire coast one day. Fortunately I was able to squeeze in a few places before I completely ran out of money.
Total time in Brazil 4 weeks.
First stop; Porto Alegre, Brazil about 10 hours bus ride from Montevideo, Uruguay. I mainly trained that week..sticking to basics of eating, sleeping and training. That's where I met up with the Australians I had met in Argentina. Great bunch of guys and no shortages of laughs.
Second stop was in Florianopolis..aka Floripa Brazil where I met up with a friend I had made back in Colombia. What a beautiful place. I stayed in Backpackers Sunset and it was literally on top of a hill where it overlooked the main land, and 30 seconds walk away there you were to see the coast line. As always, beautiful scenery, beautiful people lots of surf and tons of Acai. I took the week to relax and try and get some sun. Over the 3 months in South America most of the places I was caught in rain or cooler climates. No way could I come back with next to no tan after being away 9 months. I had my fair share of fun in Floripa to say the least. A wonderful Brazilian took me around the city, enjoyed some coffee and later we put our dancing skills in action. For some reason Samba is the most difficult dance I've ever tried to do, I can't seem to catch the rhythm. At some points I had it and was all excited, 2 seconds later I was tripping over my feet. Samba is one sexy dance and I can't wait to get into some lessons here in Canada.
I have Fernando Reis from Sao Paulo to thank for my very first Portuguese lesson in Uruguay. We went over the basics which stuck well with me considering I had been virtually studying Spanish for the 8 months prior. It is always necessary to learn your numbers if you plan on traveling and training jiu jitsu. When you're doing warm up drills and it gets to you, expect to count in the language of the country...otherwise you might be the reason everyone's doing extra drills. Canadense Brasilera he still calls me because he says he can't believe I'm Canadian. It's very flattering for me when the locals think you fit right in. Everyone is so warm, passionate, hospitable and great company. My favorite of all the words on my trip is still "todo bem" It never gets old!!
|Me and Teresa in Florianopolis, Brazil|
|Everyone at the first beach party of high season|
|Porto Alegre, waiting to eat with the usual crew|
|Hostel in Montevideo, Uruguay with Fernando Reis behind me! Best Portuguese teacher ever!|
Gins the kiwi beauty!
My experience throughout South America was amazing. I can't wait for round two one day.
Now to the cities of all cities...Rio de Janeiro, Brazil