In Brazil, and maybe all of South America, cigarette packages look like this. It makes you want to think twice about smoking. I would feel outraged if I were a cigarette company because of having to put a big gross warning on every cigarette package.
My flight back to Rio went uneventful. I immeadiately caught the bus back to Copacabana and attempted to check into a new hostel, Walk On The Beach, which was full. The staff there was nice and recommended another hostel, El Misti, a few blocks away which turned out to be one of my favorites.
Staying in a good hostel is important. It will make or break the enjoyment of your stay. My criteria for a good hostel goes like this:
-friendly atmosphere where guests and staff mingle
-a small and intimate common area to facilitate mingling (hopefully the common area is a bar)
-good location near to nightlife
-helpful staff that know the area
-clean and comfortable beds
El Misti met all of the criteria and so I really enjoyed my last few weeks in Brazil.
A bunch of us (English, Australian, German, etc.) went out to Lapa (remember…street part I described in earlier posts) .
This is a view from the famous steps of lapa.
At the end of the night around 5am, we bought our drunk food and ate by the dumpsters. Classy!
Another night I went out with another bunch from the hostel (Peruvian, Brazilian, Argentinian, US) and got to practice my Spanish a bunch. I was also the Rio veteran and ended up leading the group on a bus to Lapa again, where we settled on this club.
After hours of dancing and drinking we bused it back in one the crazy vans that roam the streets and ended up jumping out on Copacabana beach.
Another night I met a clone of myself, another American college student traveling alone. I say clone because he is the only one I met not traveling after a study abroad program. Just traveling because he chose to travel for the sake of loving it…like me.
We grabbed some beers and watched a soccer game at one of the lanchete’s (snack bars). It was delusional with a mix of odd characters including an old man with no teeth offering up his huge plate of sandwiches (just turkey..nothing else) to everyone, scary guys with huge tattoos, little kids, etc.
I should also probably mention that yes, I did do things during the day. Most days I took the van to Ipanema beach, post #9, to listen to my music and audio books while admiring the stunning figures.
Great times in Rio!