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essays | places
a different Latin America
Rio de Janeiro / Brazil · 2014 walking on art
It took 48 bus-hours to get to Rio, but the first 24 felt like 72. The mother in front of me had let her kid loose and the little boy befriended me quite forcefully. Ah, he was alright, but I didn’t shed a single tear after they got off. All I remember of that train of views whooshing past my window is blurred into layers: red soil at the bottom, green atop, the occasional layer of concrete in-between.
It rained upon arrival as though the heavens were co-lamenting my parting from her and our friends in Buenos Aires. Soon I was sandwiched between strangers in the middle of a three-bed bunk, splitting the room with 26 other hostel creatures.
Over the next weeks I learned that Portuguese might look like Spanish, but sounds nothing like it, and that Brazil’s ethnic mix is as diverse as others in Latin America but completely different. Rio had to fall short of the incredibly tall expectations others had built for me. But no hard feelings Rio. It wasn’t you. It was me. Just a bunch of unrelated circumstances wrongfully tainting the experience and with it the innocent place underneath.
After the concrete jungle, the jungle jungle covering Ilha Grande was refreshing. Cold really with its unrelenting downpours. And there was a witch on a beach and a patrol boat chasing me, but not really. I elaborate below.
Before long, I had to flee from the soccer world cup and the sharp prices that arrived with it. A day after my escape to Panama, my bed would have cost me tenfold. Until we meet again, Brazil!
The city's antagonist was pristine.
Ilha Grande / Brazil · 2014 the prelude to a tropical downpour
what a melodic overlap of cityscape and landscape
Rio de Janeiro / Brazil · 2014 where Frank found his girl
places / stories
Himalayas / Hiking Alone, Astray & Everestless
when you set out to see Everest, but Everest doesn’t care
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