Rio Carnival 2013
The Carnival in Rio de Janeiro is a world famous festival held before Lent every year and considered the biggest carnival in the world with two million people per day on the streets. The typical Rio carnival parade is filled with revelers, floats and adornments from numerous samba schools which are located in Rio (more than 200 approximately, divided into 5 leagues/ divisions.) A samba school is composed of a collaboration of local neighbours that want to attend carnival together, with some kind of regional, geographical common background. As the parade is taking place in the Sambadrome and the balls are being held in the Copacabana Palace and beach, many of the carnival participants are at other locations. Street festivals are very common during carnival and are highly populated by the locals. Elegance and extravagance are usually left behind, but music and dancing are still extremely common. Anyone is allowed to participate in the street festivals. Bandas and bondos are very familiar with the street carnival especially because it takes nothing to join in on the fun except to jump in. (Thank you Wikipedia).
It’s been carnival week here in Rio and tonight is the final parade of the winners. We will likely watch some on tv here but not go. We thought about purchasing tickets but it was very expensive for the five of us to go and we were kind of unsure about what we were getting ourselves into. This week has been interesting as there have been many holiday days here with people partying in the streets.
Josh wrote this a few days ago: Only in Rio…can our tennis coach call us an hour before his scheduled lesson to tell us that, and I quote (in full Columbian-Brazilian accent), “Wellla…uhmm….you see, last night was ah-Carnival….my freends and I, we-ah went to a bloco last night (ees like a really big partee), and I had a cerveja…and den anudder one…maybe a few more-ah…anyways, my-ah estomach…ees notah fee-eling so well right now…I’m sooreh, but I can’ta teach Matheus and Josh dees morning….I’m sorry…maybe I can teeech dem later today when I’m-ah fee-eling betterr….” Okay, maybe I’m exaggerating a little, but Javier actually canceled on us because he was nursing a hangover. He was completely serious.
We have been enjoying the people and culture of Brazil very much. We might be staying away from Carnival but we appreciate all of their enthusiasm and creativity!