Saturday, March 14, 2009

Day 7: Jungle Tour and Brazilian Football

Today was the best day of the trip so far!!  :)  I woke up early and went down for the free breakfast here at the hostel.  It's way better than the breakfast in Lima.  I had a bowl of cereal - still can't get over the warm milk around here that they sell in cans or plastic bottles off the side of the street, but it didn't make me sick so I'm okay with it I guess.  Also had a toasted ham and cheese sandwich...yeah, for breakfast. :) 

Then it was off for my jungle jeep tour.  The guy from the tour company called my hostel at like 7:35 and said he couldn't come pick me up there because he didn't know where it was and hadn't ever heard of it (shocking, huh).  So I had to walk down to the fancy hotels along the beach and meet him there.  I was supposed to be there by 7:50 so he sure didn't leave me much time.  I pretty much ran down there, even though it's only like 3 or 4 blocks.  And by the time I got there, I was literally just drenched.  I mean you pretty much start sweating as soon as you walk outside here, so "race walking" was NOT a good idea!  I have on a tank-top and a t-shirt over it...and I was soaked through BOTH layers...LOL...sick!!  So anyways, enough about me sweating!  This big jeep with no top on it rolls up and I knew it was for me!  There was an older couple from Germany, another from the UK, and two young girls from Brazil (not Rio).  Plus the tour guide, another young girl who was the "tour guide in training" and me!  Oh and our driver...   I guess I don't really know what I was expecting, but not that.  I thought maybe they'd pick me up in a car and we would just take the jeep once we got to the rainforest.  But no, we were just cruising through Rio in an open-top Jeep!  SO fun!!  The breeze never felt so good!! 

It wasn't that far of a drive and we were in the jungle or rainforest or whatever you want to call it - and of course there were monkeys in the trees almost immediately!

  Absolutly the most beautiful thing I think I've ever seen!!  I've always said I'm a Kansas girl or coutnry girl at heart...but I think I've decided I am a jungle girl!!  Haha...I just LOVED it!  Everything was so green and tropical and since it had rained so much the night before, everything was cool and damp and smelled so good!!  I was really surprised at how much cooler it was in the jungle...but I guess that would make sense because the sun can't really get in through all of the vegatation!  We drove up and up and up to a little viewing point (out of the vegation) that overlooked the city!  SO COOL! 

Drove a little more and found a little waterfall -- that I took lots of pictures of!  It was so pretty and peaceful I actually took a video clip of it too...hope it turns out good. 

Well, as you can see in the pictures, since I thought the Jeep tour would just be in a JEEP the whole time, of course I wore flip-flops! Turns out we actually went on a hike through the rainforest.  I was okay in my flip-flops, but shoes would've been a better choice!  How was I supposed to know!? 

(REEAAALLLLY wanting to swing from this vine!!)

I REALLY wanted to swing from some of the big vines, but due to liability reasons, my tour guide would not allow it.   Okay, I really could go on and on and one about the jungle this morning (I have like 1,000 pictures just from it), but I'm going to move on for the sake of time... 

They dropped me back off at my hostel and when I walked in, some people who work there were talking about the big "football" match this evening.  I was like...hmmm...'futbol' in Brazil huh.  So of course I inquired about it - and decided to go!  And of course as soon as I stepped out of the car some guy came up to me selling the local teams soccer jersey so I bought one!    ANYways, this HUGE stadium and all the fans were absolutely the craziest thing I have been to or seen in a LONG time!!  It was the biggest and most famous Rio team playing some other Brazilian team I guess..a big rivalry though.  Fans were pouring in down the streets beating drums and chanting and waving huge banners and flags...just absolut craziness!!  I took some video clips of the fans when they scored a goal...I really can't even describe it.  But man when they did something bad, they all booed and cursed and threw stuff at funny.  And when the other team scored the whole side we were sitting on just went silent...almost eerily silent!  LOL...GREAT GREAT TIME!!  I met three guys from California at the game who are staying at a hostel just up the street, so we went out for dinner tonight.  Great pizza and wine (well, no wine for me) at a little Italian restaurant on the beach.  We had a good time talking and sharing crazy travel stories.  They really got a kick out of me injesting pure cocaine in Cusco...LOL.  Totally makes sense now what Luiggi was saying about the farmers chewing the leaves so they didn't ever get tired or cold!!

Okay, so that's about it for now.  The internet is quite expensive down here and typing these novels takes some time, so I'm going to cut it short! Nothing else too exciting, but I've met a lot of cool people who have told me lots of interesting things about Rio and the beaches!  Have  few things on the plate for tomorrow but I'll wait for the day to come to figure out what I'm doing...always easier that way! :)


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