First Taste of Brasil - Samba & Prawns
Trip Start Aug 17, 2010
83Trip End Sep 16, 2011
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Where I stayed
We were due to arrive into town about 4.30pm but what with the usual Brasilian buses we have dragged ourselves in just past 8pm. We are exhausted and smelly and hungry. The kitchen has closed but while we shower the hostel orders a pizza delivery for us.
Drinking a much needed beer and munching on our pizza – which is really terrible but we are starving ! - we discover our hostel (Sunset Backpackers) is on a hill overlooking the island with the most amazing views over the lagoon. Florianópolis is like a big figure 8 donut with surf beaches all around the outside and the 2 large lagoons making the holes in the middle.
The hostel owner, Junior, tells us that Sunday night is the best night to be here as there is a local’s samba party held in a beach shack. We explain that we are totally sleep deprived and seriously cannot imagine going out anywhere. Junior says he understands but that it is a shame as we are only here for a few days and the samba party only happens on Sunday. A local party, a live band, samba….. OK but let us get out of these tracksuit pants and into some jeans.
There is a small crew going and Junior takes us all in an American school bus that they have fitted with airplane seats, disco lighting and a full sound system…. Junior assures us we will make quite an entrance…. we don’t disagree.
When we stumble into our bed at about 3am we are really glad we went - totally worth it. The shack had one side set up for the band and a series of some of the best live singers you have ever heard. Everyone is dancing and when Jim and I get up to cut the floor the locals are friendly and welcoming and a little amused by our 'samba’ but with a few welcome tips we don’t do too badly. The atmosphere was amazing and the energy of the joint kept us from feeling tired.
The rest of our days in Florip were a bit more relaxed and we drifted into town and around the sights in a very lackadaisical fashion.
On our last night we indulged in a Florip tradition… a prawn dinner, or as the locals say, “sequência de camarão”. This consists of 7 courses … all giant prawns. We start off with some plain prawns with lemon and dipping sauce and quickly move to garlic prawns, fried prawns, then prawn clay pots, curried prawns, chili prawns – on skewers, and finally a prawn stir fry type dish…. It might sound a bit weird but all the courses were spaced well and small enough so that believe it or not you did not get prawn overload…. Although you do need to like prawns to order a prawn dinner ! We thought it was fantastic.
Our bus to Sao Paulo is not until the evening, so on our last day we decide to head to one of the beaches and try our hand at Sand Boarding. It was very fun but very grimy as you get covered in sand in ALL places within 2 seconds of starting. Jim was pretty good with his snowboarding background and while I didn’t do dunes as steep as his I did manage to stay up… most of the time. No pictures of the snowboarding as sand and cameras are not a good mix, but it was fun…. Especially being able to have a shower at the hostel before we had to catch our bus.
Bus - ah well time for yet another bus, but we are excited that this is our last night bus in South America…… we won’t miss them !