Hola & Feliz Ano Novo!
We have arrived in Brazil... and are so pumped to be here!!!
Travel to Rio was not easy (surprise surprise). We departed Chicago on Monday, December 28th... as it was raining ICE. As a result, ALL flights were grounded in O'Hare, nothing landing or taking off. Our booked flight to Houston, where we would connect on our way to Rio, was canceled. After 6 stressful hours of waiting and attempting to get out of Chicago, we luckily got on the ONLY departing flight to Houston!
Unfortunately, our plane sat on the runway for another 2 hours "de-icing". By the time we landed in Houston we naturally missed our connection to Rio. Awesome.
However, with our backpacks over our shoulders we sprinted to another gate boarding to Sao Paulo, Brazil (close enough to Rio for us!). United was able to get us on the flight to Sao Paulo, booked a connection to Rio, and before we knew it we had arrived and were throwing back much needed beers!
Our home for the next 8 nights (we chose 8 nights because well, we don't have anywhere else to be!) is the beautiful Ipanema neighborhood.
Leonardo and Nira (our very gracious AirBnb hosts!) were happy to join us for drinks 🙂 ....
We have spent the past few days exploring this insanely beautiful city. Never anywhere (and we have spent time in some of the greats - London, Rome, New York, Chicago, Boston, San Francisco, Sydney, Cape Town) have we felt sooooo much energy in a city... POSITIVE energy. Rio is electric, the people are 100% laid back and 100% ready to party. What stood out most about the people is their confidence... tall, short, large, small, old, or young there is no difference between them (they all wear the EXACT SAME bikini or speedo size and wear it proud!) - naturally Laura joined the other ladies and hiked up her bikini to bronze the booty... and Sean is in the market for a speedo (maybe).
New Years on Copacabana Beach was... incredible. A peaceful and joyous family celebration - 2 million people on the beach, 11 barges in the ocean launching fireworks, 2,000 drums beating in the sand and one hell of a party - a tribute to 100 years of Samba and the upcoming 2016 Olympic Games.
NOTE: we have decided WE WILL BE BACK for another RIO NYE in our lives (we kind of enjoyed it) if anyone is interested...
Obrigado (thank you) for taking time to follow us! Stay tuned for many more updates on our adventures. Pictures from our last few days exploring below...