Day Twenty – Eight – Rio de Janeiro

At 5.30pm, I went to the beach. There was more activity than normally. I guess because it was Friday and it was the begging of the Carnaval.

There were two types of activities and two types of people at the beach. Those who were at the beach to enjoy and those who were working. Some were jogging, playing with all kind of balls doing water sports or fighting with the waves. Others, on the other hand, were carrying products to sell, shouting to announce and trying to get attention. Everybody doing business on the beach was hardworking, and there seemed to be a good commercial chain going on. The men renting chairs and parasols were busy and they were connected to the people running the small mobile bars. Ones sitting in the comfortable chairs under parasols, with drinks in their hands, people become easy customers for the numerous vendors who walked fast up and down the beach. In the end, of the chain, there were the people collecting cans. Bech was a real market place.

Everybody doing business on the beach was hardworking, and there seemed to be a good commercial chain going on. The men renting chairs and parasols were busy and they were connected to the people running the small mobile bars. Ones sitting in the comfortable chairs under parasols, with drinks in their hands, people become easy customers for the numerous vendors who walked fast up and down the beach. In the end, of the chain, there were the people collecting cans.

When the sun was going down, we walked away from the beach and walked into a small part of Carnaval. Here people were singing and walking slowly together with the rhythm and in the direction if music. I saw many people dressed in costumes of very different styles: butterflies, flowers, cats, rabbits, nurses, police officers, brides, pirates, etc. Those who were not wearing a costume had a small flower garland on their heads or colorful decorations around their necks. There was a lot of glitter and gold powder in the air.

Everybody looked happy. They did not look worried or anxious about the situation the country was in or its future. They seemed like different people than those who were telling us: We have so many problems in this country. It is a very bad moment in Brazil now. Or maybe the carnival was their way to forget about the future and be in the now.

For some years ago my friends Nina and Ida did an interesting project in Rio, asking people on the streets about their visions of the future.

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