Food is something that brings the world together. Each culture has its own traditions and favorite foods. As a self proclaimed foodie, I was so excited to try cuisines in the countries they originated in. During my travels, I have discovered and will undoubtedly continue to discover culinary treasures around the globe. I am honored to share with you, My Elephant Tribe, the amazing meals I have enjoyed throughout the world.
Day 24: Brazil
Like every day since we discovered it, we went to Bonde Sucos for a salgado before we started our day. Today, we decided to go see Christ the Redeemer. After our salgados, we called an Uber to take us to the Trem do Corcovado. When we arrived we learned that the next train was not for another 2 and a half hours. We decided to check out the cute little shops and then see what time it was. We realized there was only one cute shop.
When I made my first solo trip in 2008 to El Salvador, I started a tradition. I buy my mom something for her office. Always something small. Many people in her office have started buying her gifts when they travel as well to add to her collection. I have continued the tradition on this journey as well. In Belize, I got her a little lizard. In Costa Rica a cute little candle. For Brazil, I got her a mini Christ the Redeemer.
On this journey I have started a new tradition. I am sending Preston postcards from everywhere we visit. On each I am including the LAT/LON coordinates of my favorite place in each country. That idea came from my good friend Brian (not my brother). I thought it was a fun idea. He gets to look up the coordinates and maybe map out places he’d like to visit in the future. Leaving Preston was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done in my life. He’s my little buddy. We hung out all the time and share a love of swimming. He is wise beyond his years and has the biggest heart in the world. He loves to test the boundaries, but he is a kind hearted and generous little boy who I miss dearly. But, through this journey he gets to grow too. He is learning that just because you don’t see someone everyday doesn’t mean they don't love you and aren't thinking about you. We chat on Marco Polo and Kristie posts pictures of him all of the time. He is learning about other countries and we are staying connected. Choosing yourself doesn't mean leaving your loved ones behind.
After our shopping excursion, we went to Parqué Lagé. Preston would have loved it. He loves nature and this was a beautiful balance of nature and architecture. There was a cute little cafe inside the main building which opened into a courtyard with a pool of water in the center. My first thought when seeing the cafe was that it was probably a great place for brunch with the girls. Or Bitches Love Brunch as I like to call it.
We didn’t stay long, as it was nearing our train departure time. We got back to the station with a few minutes to spare. We waited until it was time to board the train. The excitement was building and I could barely sit still. We were about the see something I have wanted to see most of my life. I have seen it in movies and TV shows, but to actually see it in person was a dream come true.
We boarded the train and made the ascent up the mountain. The views were incredible. Other passengers tried to quickly snap photos, but missing every time. I knew that the views were just going to get better. When we made it to the top, I stood there in amazement. It was massive. The immensity gave it a powerful presence. It was worth the wait. We took our pictures and even laid on the ground to get the so called “best” angle. The views of the city did not disappoint. From the ground the statue looks tiny, but up close it is enormous. It is as tall as a skyscraper. As I stood there, blinded by the sun as I looked up at it, I thought about everything that went into creating it. The time and effort that went into creating this modern wonder of the world. The people that sacrificed for its completion and the blood, sweat and tears that were shed for it. It is so much more than a gigantic statue of Jesus. Even a nonreligious person like myself can appreciate its sentimental value.
This is the point where I tell you about our dinner and how good it was (Alfaia), but I think that will take away from the importance that is Christ the Redeemer. Instead, I am going to leave you with a picture. You get to go!!! It is a must if you have not already been. I’m am counting the days until I get to see it again.