So we had only a month to enjoy this enormous country with a fixed date towards the end of it, the mighty carnival, the greatest party on earth and the only reason I am here at the hottest time of year. Plans soon changed from attempting to visit the Amazon, after all trying to get anywhere in this nation without a flight is the equivalent of bussing it across Europe, and boy paying those bus fares is a smack in the face. We took a night bus from Foz do Iguacu up to Curitiba and stayed with a friend of mine from my Masters, and her husband. It was great to see familiar faces and the city has some fantastic galleries, parks and Niemeyer architecture. We braved a pizza rodizio complete with sweet pizzas covered in fruits, coconut and chocolate. Not my usual choice but we gave it a try and with the distinct lack of Portuguese after crossing the border we had no idea what calzone we were being offered and just tried everything.
Its hard to express my feelings towards Brazil, after all getting anywhere in this massive country is a complete ball ache, but more disappointing is the inequality. The south is unbelievably developed leaving the north cut off and stranded, yet billions of Reais are being squandered on hosting a world cup that no one wants. The infrastructure in some of the cities is really impressive yet Rio has only two metro lines, most of which runs parallel! Its the Brazilians that make Brazil so impressive, not that there is a ‘typical’ Brazilian. Everyone on the streets looks beautiful, beating the reputation that proceeds it, with every shade of skin, hair type, eye colour imaginable. The capacity and creativity exists, the music and art is incredible nationwide. The resources are there but the capital simply isn’t the doctor patient ratio is laughable. This truly could be one of the greatest nations on Earth but there is so much fighting against it. I am anxious for the world cup, the whole world is watching and I want Brazil to shine gloriously. People should be able to express themselves at protests peacefully without police provocation. I need to return to see so much more, including the Amazon and the negatives can’t have affected my opinion too much as I already have the next route mapped out!