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Travels in the life of Laila

Raindrops are falling on my head

BRAZIL | Saturday, 3 May 2008 | Views [542]

I arrived in Rio with no problems. I know, read that again. No problems. I made my connecting flight in Lisbon, the food on TAP Air was actually pretty decent, I had 2 seats to myself, the movies were good, I got through customs in 5 minutes, my luggage arrived intact and my taxi driver was waiting for me when I got out. Not bad eh? Let´s not jinx it for the return.

Sadly it was pouring with rain from the minute I arrived so I have only seen Rio in the rain. Initial impressions are that I am amazed at how similar it feels, smells and looks to Africa. The air feels the same (heavy and humid), the smells of water and streets are the same...I also have to admit that I am trying not to buy into the stereotype of how Rio is dangerous. It felt a little scary last night but then it was dark and I don´t know the streets so it is bound to feel unfamiliar.

I am getting into the groove of this whole travelling alone thing...I can´t say I love it as I like having somebody to natter to. But it doesn´t freak me out like it used to. Today I am going to hover in the lounge of the hostel and see if I befriend anyone. I plan to wander round Copacabana, see the beach and all the tacky men in their speedos jogging along the sidewalk...nice! and then I am going to visit the old fort and then this afternoon I am going to go up Sugar Loaf mountain as it is a clear day and I want to make the best of it.

The hostel I am staying in is prety decent, clean, people are friendly but it is hard to make friends unless you jump someone and I am not good at doing that :-) Most people here are long term travellers so they want to relax, go to the beach, eat cheap food and generally lie low. I also realsie (now don´t fall over in shock at this) but I am not a good traveller...I am not 21 for starters, and I am not into most of the stuff young travellers are. I want to try cool restaurants, see all the sights and generally do lots in the few days I have here. So this is my time to strike it out on my own. Rio here I come!

It is surprisingly a pretty safe city to walk around in alone...though not sure about at night time. I will report back after today!

I am going to time out soon so I´ll write more soon. Tomorrow I leave for the yoga retreat so I will write all about that too.




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