Ilhe Grande. Last post before Christmas, so Feliz Natal for Monday everyone! We had a great few days in Rio - full updates will be posted to the blog soon. In short, we visited the Jesus Christ the Redeemer statue, the Maracana stadium and we also managed to make it to a Caetano Veloso concert. For that last one I need to thank very generous in-laws who encouraged and payed for Rach and I to go see Brazil's finest singer/songwriter of the last 50 years as an anniversary present.
Yesterday we took a bus south of Rio and stopped off at a port to get an Escuna boat over to Ilhe Grande, ("big island") off the coast of Brazil. The boat ride took about an hour and a half - Nelson's first trip across water. Our mode of transport seemed a bit rickety, and with no mention of health and safety procedures I imagined it was us versus the elements if anything should happen. The four guys charged with getting us across a blustery bay to our destination were tattoo-sporting weather-worn, wiry seamen. They sort of looked like they wouldn't throw their own mother a lifejacket if she was drowning in a puddle. But after a few ciggies and beers they cheered up and found little Nelson highly amusing.
Anyway, we made it and are staying in a beautiful Pousada (like a guest house or b+b) and the island is idyllic, uncrowded but with enough going on to make it very entertaining. It really feels like we're spending Christmas on the island from King Kong.
Edson Arantes do Nascimento. Pele's real name. See previous blog.