Summer in Rio de Janeiro, obviously means beach days, but who knew it also meant rain. Wet weather frequented many of my vacation days, though as is typical of tropical showers, they never lasted more than an hour or so. So flocks of bronzed people are on and off the beach as if it had a revolving door.
We decided not to make any excuses for the weather and take some rent-a-bikes out for a spin. In our hood, we found Mr. Bike For Rent, who lives at Rua Miguel Lemos, #10, just a couple blocks from our "hotel" (read Love Motel with hourly rates, thanks for [NOT] telling us, Lonely Planet) in Copacabana, who fixed us up with some shiny mountain bikes for R$30 per person for 4 hours.
Holly and I had quite coincidentally selected red dresses for the ride, so to make the greatest impression from the bike lane, we insisted that Linda and Tamika coordinate accordingly.
Rio is one of the few cities in Brazil with bike lanes, not just along the tourist beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema, but all along Guanabara Bay to the Botafogo and Flamengo districts. I already told you about crossing the tunnel to get from Copacabana to Botafogo.
The bike lane in Rio did not disappoint. Not only were the views of the Cidade Maravilhosa just that - marvelous, but the scenery on the bike lane itself was quite amusing as well.
I call this Rio de Janeiro Cycle Cheek.
We met Fabio somewhere in Botafogo as we all pulled to a halt at the bike stoplight.
Because he was dressed appropriately, we let him join our group.
Fabio lives in the hillside neighborhood of Santa Teresa and bikes to and from work in Ipanema. His boss even installed a shower for bike commuters! He also leads large groups of cyclists on bike tours on Sundays.
Then came the flood.
We stopped for a beer at a barraca when it started pouring, waiting for the rain to cease.
After about five beers and no signs of dry weather, we were too drunk to care about getting wet, but didn't want to be drunk and not so in charge of our bicycles in the dark in the City of God.
By the end of the ride, all the ladies in red had to wring out their dresses. A great first bici-aventura in Brazil, with many more to come!