Brazil Trip -- Days 3 & 4
May 28, 2005
RIO DE JANIERO –
By Lindsey Morris, 2004 Jayhawk Senior
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May 26, 2005 – Day 3
Day three of our Brazilian trip began with breakfast at 8 a.m. and then a two-hour bus ride to the Olympic Training Center. Most of us slept on the ride out there, but those who didn’t said it was a beautiful drive. When we got to the training center, we got to watch the men’s and women’s junior national teams practice. It was very impressive.
Shortly after we got there, we ate lunch with all of the teams at the site. Then we got to relax a little and check out the complex. For the Brazilian national teams, this is home away from home. They have everything they need within the walls of the complex. There are living quarters, a dining hall, a game room, Internet access and a pool. Not that they need the pool, however, since the ocean is right across the street.
Everyone was really excited to get to play in the ocean. We all ran into the cool water and quickly found out that the waves are not only big, but also strong. The waves were so strong that they knocked many of us off our feet more than once. There were a few scrapes and bruises, but no one really minded. It was still so much fun!
While some stayed to play in the sand, others went back to lie by the pool. Jill Dorsey and Ashley Michaels decided to hit the beach volleyball courts and play with one of our tour guides, Cristiano, and one of the assistant coaches of the women’s national team.
Next on the agenda was a friendly scrimmage with the women’s junior national team. The only problem was that our girls didn’t bring any of their volleyball equipment since this was a last-minute idea. So Cristiano and Fabio scrounged around and found us enough shoes, socks and shorts to play. We came out strong in the first game, but just couldn’t finish. We lost in three games, but I think the girls had a good time and will look back on it as an amazing opportunity.
After the girls got cleaned up and back in their own clothes, we got to rest for a while and watch the women’s national team practice. They were incredible. Around 7 p.m. we ate dinner in their cafeteria again and then headed back to our hotel in Rio. All of the girls were pretty tired, so again, a lot of people slept on the ride. Once back in the hotel, some girls went straight to bed, while others took a walk down to the beach. It was a pretty laid back night after a very busy day.
May 27, 2005 – Day 4
Once again our day begins with breakfast in the hotel at 8 a.m. and then we loaded the bus. This time we were headed to Sao Paulo, a six-hour ride from Rio. For the first half of the trip most of the girls slept. We stopped for lunch around noon at the Via Grill. It was another Brazilian BBQ with a buffet and people bringing around all sorts of meat to the tables for you to try. While it was not as good as the first Brazilian BBQ that we went to in Rio, it was still very good. Then we all got the opportunity to pick out and try some Brazilian candy. Jana was helping all the girls pick out the best kinds to try and bring home for their friends and family.
We loaded up the bus again to finish the trip to Sao Paulo. This time there was lots of activity on the bus. Some people were playing games, while others were reading their books or watching DVDs. Once we got close to the city, Josi, Jana and Paula got really excited and started to point out all the different aspects of their city. We drove right past the University that they attended before coming to Kansas. Jana was so excited she was about to jump through the window.
The real homecoming came when we pulled up to the hotel. Josi’s mom, sister and niece were all there waiting for us to arrive along with Paula’s mom and 4-year-old daughter, Paola. It was so fun to watch them greet their families whom they haven’t seen for months! We were all introduced in the traditional Brazilian style, a kiss on each cheek. The coaches wanted to give them some time together, so the rest of us had a few hours to relax in our new hotel.
Around 6 p.m., we took off for a tour of Pinheiros, the club that we will play at on Monday. It is the largest club in South America and right there in downtown Sao Paulo. This 40,000-member club is a giant sports center with facilities for every sport. They also have a spa and eating area inside the complex. It was quite impressive.
After a tour of the grounds, we ate at the restaurant right there inside the club. It was pizza again, and we all enjoyed it immensely. We were also treated to our first Brazilian ice cream. There were the traditional flavors of chocolate, vanilla and strawberry, but some of us branched out and tried some new flavors, such as coconut, pineapple, and brigadero (a type of chocolate unique to Brazil). After dinner we went back to the hotel for a relaxing night.