We didn't make it to the internet cafe yesterday, so I'm making up for that now.
Yesterday, we went to the beach again. I don't think I talked about all of the hagglers on the beach. You basically can't go 5 minutes without being asked to buy something. It's really annoying. At one point, I was sitting there, wearing my sunglasses, and a guy selling sunglasses came up to me, and shoved a pair in my face. If only we spoke the same language, I would've told him how stupid that was. Instead I just pointed to my sunglasses and tried to shoo him away. Another strange thing that we noticed at the beach, is that there are a lot of "standers," as we've come to call them. People who come to the beach without a towel, and just stand the whole time. Growing up in a beach town in Florida, I've spent a fair share of time at the beach, and I've never seen this before. Very strange.
After the beach, we got a quick and dirty lunch at one of the beach vendors, then we made our way back to the hotel. Rested for a bit, then caught a cab to Sugarloaf, which is probably the most recognizable landmarks of Brazil, next to the Christ the Redeemer statue. We timed it so that we would be there right around sunset, and our timing ended up being perfect. You take one tram to the first little mountain, and then a second tram to Sugarloaf. Both of these stops offer fantastic views of Rio. Breathtaking, really. This was also the place that we saw the most fellow Americans. There just aren't that many here, that we've seen. It's always nice to hear your native tongue spoken in a foreign country.
After Sugarloaf, we walked to a restaurant that is like a buffet, but they weigh your food, and charge you by the kilo. Good food, and very cheap. That's one thing that I've noticed about Rio in general, is that everything is pretty cheap.
Today, we met a tour guide around 9 am for a tour through the Tijuca Forest. He picked us up in an open-air jeep, and there were 2 other Americans (ironically from Ohio) on the tour with us. This was such a cool tour! The forest was easily 5-10 degrees cooler than the rest of the city, and we saw some beautiful sites.
We've been seeing advertisements for something called Açai, but we weren't sure what it was. So while we were on our tour, we asked our guide (who spoke perfect English), and he said we should definitely try it, and that it's delicious. Apparently, it's a fruit that they make into a smoothie and mix with Guarana syrup. So after our tour, we went to a corner diner-type of place for lunch. Got a little sandwich and a Açai to share. It was fabulous! I can't describe what it tasted like, because I've never tasted anything like it before. I liked it so much, that I got one for dinner, too, which we had at the same corner diner.
Now, we're just sitting here at the internet place, catching up on email, and enjoying our last night in Rio. Tomorrow, we're off to Buenos Aires, Argentina. We'll be there for 3 nights. I really can't wait to post pictures, because we've taken some cool ones. Like Pinky said in her comment on my last post, I didn't bring my card reader, because I didn't know if we would be able to check our internet, and if we did, I really didn't want to upload pictures to some random computer.