Porto Alegre and Park de Aparados da Serra

Written by Nadine Zangerle on . Posted in Brazil

Finally we made it into Porto Alegre. Alright, the question is, why going all the way south of Brazil? We wanted to visit our friend Beatriz, whom we have met in Lukla/Himalaya, Nepal four years ago. Back then she invited us to her home and with this in our mind we headed south.

As usual we travelled with the sunshine and this was just perfect to watch the World Cup Finals Germany – Argentina. The best place to watch was definitely the Fan Fest in Porto Alegre. Due to Geographic there was a majority of Argentinian fans. Luckily we got some support from Brazilians and we joined a German group.

The Argentinians went crazy when the goal fell and they didn’t realize it was offside. So they were showing us obscene gestures and smiled derisively. Well let’s see who smiles last and when Goetze hit the goal in Minute 113 it was an overwhelming feeling. Finally Germany won the World Cup and we danced breathlessly. What a feeling! With some Brazilians and Germans we continued to celebrate the victory in a bar.

The evening seemed perfect so we shared a taxi. Unfortunately the taxi missed our house and dropped us off two blocks to far. This was already enough to get robbed. Two man, one with a gun pushed us in a corner. The one man went to the crossing to make sure, no one is coming.

The second robber was so frantic with his gun and didn’t let go of us after we gave him the money. He was yelling “bolso, bolso” (bag) and was pointing with his weapon towards me. I was shocked because we had the big camera in the bag. We only took it because my condition was to take a taxi home. When I made a step back he was getting nervous and fumbling with the gun towards my belly. Then he grabbed the grip of the bag and tore it off. Gone was our big camera and gone was our excitement over the World Championship.

The next day we went to the police with Beatriz but the anger and disappointment stayed with us. Luckily Beatriz had a good medicine – hiking in the Canyon. She took some days off from work and showed us the beautiful landscape around Praia Grande.

Due to my massive cold we couldn’t hike inside the Canyon since you have to cross the ice cold river at least 10 times and the water goes all the way up to your knees. So we climbed the Piedra Branca and had a fantastic view over the landscape.

To get a little taste of those massive canyons here we went inside the Malacara Canyon. The next day we explored the area and walked along the Rim of the Canyon in the Parque Nacional Aparados da Serra. Thanks to Juju, Beatriz friend, who borrowed us here camera, we could take plenty of pictures to share with you.

Back in Porto Alegre we tried to get a new camera. Due to the high import taxes in South America the prices are insane but Michael found an online shop in Sao Paulo with a reasonable price. On arrival we paid the camera and Michael adjusted the settings. The lens is not as good as the one we had before but they cost here three times as much. 

We arranged a meeting with the Germans we had met at the Fan Fest and enjoyed a Churrasco (Barbecue). Tessa works at Berlitz and she told us about the great need of Language Instructors for German and English. We listened to it and thought about an opportunity to take a time-out from traveling. So we sent out our application and got a job interview. So, that’s what we took on Monday. You never know.


São Paulo - a gigantic city

Written by Nadine Zangerle on . Posted in Brazil

We touched ground in the middle of this gigantic metropolitan of São Paulo. With a population of 20 million the city is bigger than our state Nordrhein-Westfalen. Daniel picked us up and drove us to our accommodation. The family is so cute, they converted their office and we had a whole apartment for ourselves. How awesome is this?

The whole family adopted us from the spot and it felt so good. They were feeding us the best food in gigantic portions and we also were so excited to have an own room and bathroom. What a nice change not to sleep in a dorm and share the bathroom. Are we in heaven?

We watched the football games of Germany with Daniel and Camile in the Goethe-Institut. Not only had they plenty of viewing areas, they also offered Weißbier, Weißwurst, Brezel und Currywurst – real German beer and food. You can’t understand how you long for these kind of things if you haven’t had it in a while.

The downdraft was the awfully long waiting time. Michael missed 3 goals between Germany and Brazil while he waited in line. After the first goal from Germany he wanted to get some beer since he didn’t return I went checking on him. So we swopped places and it took me up to the playing minute 43 – a total of 32 minutes - to get back with 5 beers. But not the German Weißbier. This would have taken me another 20 minutes, so forget about it. We came here to watch the games and not to wait in line.

It seems that they don’t want to make profit. Well, even if it says Goethe-Institut, this wasn’t German organized, this was a chaos and the worst I have ever seen. Well let’s get back to football. Did the Germans really goal 7 times? A lot of people thought we are watching a repetition but when the number on the screen changed, everyone was going wild. Even the Brazilian Fans started cheering for the Germans now.

After diverse TV and Newspaper Interviews we enjoyed the German victories. Check out yourself:

And if you check out this one, scroll down to July 9th. Didier wrote a little article about us. We met him in Recife:

We didn’t miss out on the sightseeing part of São Paulo and even with all her work, Camile found time to show us the town. Daniel was busy studying Portuguese in the morning and joined us for the afternoons. Once we were here for football we had to see the Football Museum. And it was worth it. So in case you happen to be in São Paulo, check it out.

Since we lacked behind with our reports we updated our website and also had some newspaper reports to do. The German Newspaper Rundschau Rhein-Sieg-Kreis published four articles during the World Cup about us. How cool is this?

One evening we went out with Camile, Daniel and friends to have some real Brazilian dinner. And the food was fantastic but the desert from Camiles friend was just mind blowing. I guess more for the girls than for the guys. Well, more for us.

Camiles Mom was so much fun. She was so nice to drive us around for Michael’s glasses, since he needed new ones and she even drove me to the hair dresser. Let’s get a new hair style since the Germans will win the fourth star. I just know it.

Every new beginning has an end and just on my birthday we were heading south to Porto Alegre. But not without a proper birthday cake, baked from Camiles grandma. How amazing is this? We don’t want to leave! Thank you so much for this special time with you. We had a great experience with Daniel, Camile, Ariston, Luzimar & Co. Hope we will see each other again.


Rio de Janeiro and Copacabana

Written by Nadine Zangerle on . Posted in Brazil

Sure our flight schedule was changed again by GOL so we left at 4:50am instead of 2am. We had a stop-over in Belo Horizonte and another sleepless night. Tired and exhausted we arrived in Rio de Janeiro and jumped into the bus to the Copacabana.

Our apartment was well located, just 5 minutes to the beach and 20 minutes to the FIFA Fan Fest. So we watched the game Brazil vs. Chile and it was so packed that we had to watch on the second screen outside of the Fan Fest.

Unfortunately for the second game FIFA shut off the second screen and Columbian Fans tried to find TVs to watch their game. Only for the Brazilian games they turn on the second screen which is really not understandable and fair for the other teams.

We decided to leave early the next day to make sure we get into the Fan Fest to watch the German game. We were close to a heart attack while we watched the game Germany vs. Algeria. Why couldn´t we make the second goal before, instead of going into overtime? 

While we couldn´t hold back our excitement we met a German couple who are living in Rio since 40 years. After this amazing game they invited us to celebrate a bit in their apartment with a young woman who stays with them and who we have met somewhere on our travels. We still couldn´t find out where we met but we are sure we know each other.

The view from their apartment over the sugar loaf and the Corcovado with its Christo de Redeemer was just mind blowing. When they offered us real German bread and fantastic cheese it felt like in a dream. Thank you so much for your hospitality, we so much appreciate it. And we are sure, we always meet twice in life.

Well we couldn´t leave Rio de Janeiro without seeing the sugar loaf (Pão de Açúcar) and the Corcovado with its 38m high Christ the Redeemer. With the mountain cable car we went up to the Sugar Loaf and had a fantastic view towards the city and the bays. After over one hour the Christ of the Redeemer looked out of the clouds and we enjoyed the view. Afterwards we strolled around the city center which has some nice old buildings like the Municipal Theater. 

The next morning we got up early to get a ticket for the Corcovado since its quickly sold out. When we arrived, the Christo and the city was hidden behind clouds but luckily after half an hour it showed its face. It was packed with people so we decided to return quickly to the Copacabana. We had to get ready to continue to São Paulo.

In São Paulo we wanted to visit Daniel and Camile to enjoy some more German games together. Luckily Michael checked our flight and realized that we got booked on a totally different plane. Two hours earlier, waiting for the bus without luck and hopping on a taxi we were astonished to see which plane we boarded. For the Brazilian Team two famous artists spray painted an airplane from the company GOL. Normally the Team flies with this plane so we had the pleasure to sit in their seats. How cool is this? Let`s go south.

Room: Rua Santa Clara, 195 202 Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro 22041010 Brasilien

Contact: Valentina Homem (/users/show/12870252) +1 646 203 7007
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Comment: five minutes away from the beach of Copacabana and a big room with wifi.