I am on the farewell tour of my posts. I am in Rio today. I will be in São Paulo next week and Recife the week after that. There is nothing left for me to do but say goodbye and to thank my good colleagues for all they did.
I am at the Marriott at Copacabana. It is really a great place, right across from the beach. I am not very much attracted to the beach, per-se, but I do like to go to the little cabanas and drink draft beer while watching the waves. Copacabana is interesting sociologically. During the sixties, it was a magnet for the young and the beautiful. Many never left. They are not as beautiful and young only in comparison to the sand and trees. Actually, it is likely that most of the coconut palms are younger. But I think it is a good thing. They seem content. There will probably soon be a generational change with new young people starting the cycle again.
The taxi driver on my way to the consulate was a real Rio lover. He seemed a little gruff until I opened my window, explaining that I wanted to feel more of Rio. He told me as much as he could get in about the history of the city and why it is the greatest place in the world. The Paris of the tropics, he called it, but better than the Paris of France because God has sculpted nature to enhance Rio. He has a point about that. Rio is one of the world’s most beautiful natural locations for a city.
One of the big advantages of the Marriott, besides the location, is that I get free caipirinhas. I was a little unhappy when I noticed that I did not have my return flight to Brasília until 8:20. But now I am happy. I had time to go to the beer place near the beach & Marriott gave me a special pass to come back to the lounge, nice of them.
I am experiencing one of those moments in time where everything comes together. This happens not very often when the single moment seems to merge with the eternal. I cannot explain it and won’t try, but it is really a beautiful, peaceful and balanced feeling. It seems like nothing could cause me distress. It will pass when I have to get running to the airport, if not before, but I will enjoy it as long as it abides. I may never get back here and I want to remember Rio in this pleasant mood.
My picture up top shows the view from the little bar on the beach where I had my last Rio beer. The next picture shows the Marriott lounge, where I had my last Rio caipirinha. You can see why it is not hard to be in a good mood.