Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Rio de Janeiro, Part I

 In November 2013 we decided to take the kids to Rio de Janeiro. We thought we'd be clever and leave right after dinner on a Thursday evening, and the kids would sleep like little angels for the four-to-five-hour drive. Uh, no. We left later than we intended, our drive was much longer than we thought, and the kids were decidedly NOT little angels. Nora was quite upset at being in her car seat for that long, and Joseph just never went to sleep. Also, we grossly overestimated the quality of the roads we'd be driving on. 445 km, or about the distance from Cedar City to Salt Lake, ended up taking us about six hours. We arrived in Rio at about 2 am. The clerk at the front desk of our hotel kindly upgraded our room to one with another bed, and we all slept until 10 am. Nora only woke up once about 6 to nurse, and then she and I both went back to sleep.

Our first stop was Copacabana beach. The weather was cool and gray, so it wasn't great beach weather, but we figured we could play in the sand and get our feet wet. Joseph is terrified of the water and has been since a slip in a friend's pool last February. He wouldn't go any closer to the water than you see in the picture. We had talked about it before we left, however, and he knew he didn't have to go in or go any closer than he was comfortable and that he could play with some borrowed beach toys on the sand.
Jake is that tiny speck you see in the waves. I was too chicken to go in that cold water.

Nora really enjoyed herself until she tried to taste the sand and later rub it in her eyes when she got tired.

Squeeeeeeeeeeze!
 After a great lunch at an Arab restaurant right on the beach, we went back to the hotel for a nap. After naptime, it was on to Pão de Açucar, a set of beautiful giant boulders with killer views of  Rio. We took the trams up to Ursa, the first rock, and then again up to Pão de Açucar. The views of the city, beaches, mountains, and ocean were amazing. There was a significant temperature decrease as we went up too. Everyone looked at us like we were nuts because our kids were in shorts and tee-shirts, but we're used to that by now.
That's Corcovado (the big statue of Christ) on the tall mountain on the left. More on that later.

At the top of Pão de Açucar. Nora's saying hi.

Family portrait


Me and the Joe-bomb checking out the water.

Trams




After our trek, we found a street vendor selling churros filled with either chocolate or doce de leite. We got one of each. Joseph approved.
So did I.
After finding some pizza for dinner, we hit the hay excited for another day. (To be continued...)

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