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Via Loey Bull:

The day began with an early wake up at 7:20. We walked to breakfast where we ate plantains, breads, meats, cheeses, and sugarless juices. Meanwhile, Javier informed us of Brazilian foods in various states and the influence of Asian and African cultures within Brazil's cuisine today.

We then left in our two vans to begin a 30 minute drive to visit Christ the Redeemer (Cristo Redentor). The statue was bigger than anticipated for most and we all bonded over the funny tourist photos we were taking.

On our way down from the mountain, we stopped at a waterfall where beautifully-tiled water fountains and bathing areas were located. We were also informed about the different states of Brazil and the lush greenery and vast group of native animals within Rio De Janeiro.

The afternoon then began with lunch at a buffet-styled restaurant where we had different meat dishes and assorted chocolate desserts; it was another experience to try the different foods of Rio.

Via Grace Eggleston:

After lunch we headed back to the hotel for some well earned rest time. Then an hour later, many of us walked over to Copacabana beach. The waves were huge today, which made for a lot of fun.

When the beach trip got back it was time for us to reflect in our journals about the first half of the day; we focused on the visual details of all we had seen in those few hours. At six we all boarded the vans and drove up to a favela community.

We arrived at the outdoor community center, which held a small soccer game, as well as a martial arts class, and a dance class on an overlooking stage. There were kids everywhere, laughing and shouting, and we soon joined in our their fun.

The pizza soon arrived, and as soon as a new box would arrive, it would be depleted by the swarm of kids, Brazilian and American alike. Too soon it was time to say goodbye to our new friends, parting with shouts of “tchau” “obrigado” and “good night.”

Then it was time to go to the soccer game. Our seats were on the Botafogo side. Although the sizable stadium wasn’t that full, the drumming, chants, and flag waving didn’t stop until after the minute of play.