Today we leave Rio, and begin Race, and Leg, 2. We got here on September 27th, after taking 28 days and a couple of hours to sail from the east coast of the UK. At some point, I'll post the crew blogs I wrote during the crossing on here, but not just yet.
Rio has been an amazing stopover. From the first, catching sight of sugarloaf mountain-- and then catching sight of the real one, because there's a mountain that kinda looks similar when you sail in form the north-- it's surpassed my expectations. Truth be told, I didn't really know what to expect. I know some people from Brazil, but none of them come from Rio and it's only really been on my radar because the race came here. And the touristy things were great, from Jesus with his head in the clouds, to the real Sugarloaf mountain, to the meat... oh the meat! So much meat, and so good too.
But the highlights have been the Samba School, and catching up with a friend from tour. The Samba School was about an hour outside of Rio, in a large building where one of the Samba crews were practicing for Carnaval. They're still in the process of picking dancers and songs and costumes, but it was incredible to see the life and movement and enjoyment even at this early stage. I'm definitely going to have to come back to see Carnaval if that's the rehearsal.
And then a few nights later, I found out Johnny, one of the blokes I met on Marvel, happened to be in town. He left the show back in December and is usually based in Tennessee, but just so happened to be here and having a grill with his wife's family, and none of them hesitated to make me welcome and feed me beer and meat and tequila. It's amazing to be so welcomed even when language is a barrier and no one really knows what anyone else is saying. I'm definitely going to have to come back.
The hardest part of Rio has been saying goodbye to the crew that are leaving the boat after Leg 1. You spend 28 days in quite close quarters with people, you get close to them. Even having a day off and not seeing anyone from the boat, has been strange. Today we sail away, and those that are still left will watch us leave, other people in their places, and I can't imagine having to do that. I know I'll spend the next few days thinking about them, even as we bond with the new leggers, and get on with the job of sailing as fast and safe to Cape Town, where I get to see my parents and Amy. I can't wait! Just the small matter of the southern Atlantic Ocean to cross...