Here we are in Rio - we've done it ! The preparation, the organisation, the packing, the goodbyes and it all has all happened. Explaining what we are doing to loved ones and to total strangers , who have become involved in own adventure is now a reality.
The fascination that two 'grown ups' are going on a 'gap year' has given us the encouragement that we are doing something amazing. Saying goodbye at the airport to Jonathan and Hannah was a special, treasured moment, having their love and support means so much, but now we are actually doing it - it feels right.
The BA flight to Rio was perfect - for the first time in ages we have flown out of 'term time'- the plane was absolutely packed with young and old travelling on their own adventure, with their own stories to tell. Thursday 21st meant a lot to them, their waiting was over as well.
The flight was long, but packed with watching a succession of DVDs and eating so much food. Settling into a book didn't feel right - too excited, too full of anticipation.
Our first meeting was with Simon, a chartered physiotherapist, which was strange. He lived on a narrow boat in Camden and ran a practice from Soho. He was going to have dental work in Rio - who would have thought it! He had lived in Rio for a number of years. before returning to London. We shared a cab - we went our hotel and he went on to stay with friends. Our hotel is perfect - right near the Ipanema beach. It's strange what you imagine and what you actually get! The anticipation of clear, cloudless skies, -the azure blue that makes us feel good. The sight of beautiful beaches full. No-one on the beach, no beautiful people watching today. First day in Rio heavy, dense cloud that covered the sights of the city; however warm, pleasant temperature and you somehow knew that the rays were penetrating through. We walked and walked, through the busy roads lined with concrete buildings. Olympics coming, but it doesn't seem as if the city is quite there yet!!!
The heavy showers persisted throughout the day, by evening the heavens opened, torrential - we found refuge in a sports bar, close to the hotel. Live music, Mojitos and a great steak, perfect end to a good day. As the rain ceased, happy and content we went to the beach, under the dark clouded night sky we watched the heavy waves crash onto the golden sand. A night cap and back to our room. Perfect.
Until the next time - photos to follow. How's the weather at home.