Writing this on Christmas Day, it’s been just over a week since I got on the road.
A week is a long time in travel, and that day in Rio de Janeiro – walking around the Maracanã and exploring the beach life – seems forever ago. I had some nerves biking in the big bad city: I’ve seen City of God, I’ve read the newspapers, and a tiny part of me questioned if I’d come across roving gangs ruling the streets with automatic weapons. Obviously there were none. Cities are full of normal people going to work.
A week is a long time in travel, and I now feel totally comfortable asking homeowners in my awful broken Portuguese if they could fill the water bottles up.
And the biggest impression from the past few days is how hospitable people are here. I’ve spent three different nights in different houses with different strangers, all willing to let a sweaty cyclist stay the night. I’ve been cooked for and cared for far beyond expectation.
Any fear about roving gangs has evaporated with the rainforest mist. It feels great to be on the road.
Vida! Saúde! Felicidade!
And Happy Christmas!