Tag Archives: rio de janeiro


A couple of weeks ago, I found myself on an unfamiliar bicycle--winding through cars on the streets of São Paulo, Brazil. As we went over a narrow bridge, my couch surfing host shouted back at me, "watch out for the motorcycles!" They were splitting the lanes too, and a force to be avoided.

A woman and a man wait in front of a man wearing red holding a red flag that reads "PARE". Across the street there are high rises to the right of the road and large green trees to the left of the road.
Cycling São Paulo

I arrived to Southern Brazil after Argentina and Uruguay. After a couple weeks in Buenos Aires, I hopped a bus up to Montevideo, Uruguay--where I spent a week. As quickly as I fell in love with the people, the culture, the herbs, and the Fainá, I was off NB again. I had 2 days to bus 2,000 km up to Rio de Janeiro. There was no bus that went the entire distance, and bus companies in Brazil require Brazilian IDs to purchase tickets online. So I bought a ticket to Pelotas and crossed my fingers. When I arrived, the bus to Rio was sold-out, but I just bought a ticket North, and--after a few transfers--I reached a station in Florianópolis with a straight-shot to Rio.

Mikey stands facing away from the camera leaning on a wooden railing. The landscape in front of them is a lush green jungle with a huge river flowing through it. In the background, massive waterfalls gush water into the river.
Foz do Iguaçu

It was a bit intimidating stepping onto the street out of the bus station when I finally arrived (well, after chasing down my bus--banging on the side to let me re-board; I had forgotten my jacket in the seat pocket). Brazil, and Rio especially, is known for both violent crimes and petty theft--both on behalf of the poor and the police. This is a country with vast resources--one of the most powerful emerging economies in the world--yet there is still massive class disparity and corruption. In fact, the streets were still tagged with spraypaint condemning the political coup 5 months earlier that saw the ousting of Dilma Rousseff (from the Workers' Party).

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From Peru to India

I'm laying on my bed in a small room on the 4th floor of my new room in Miraflores. In 2 weeks I plan to be in Cusco, exploring ancient ruins like Machu Picchu for my week off. I've grown to like this place; I'm sharing it with ~6 other International travelers, it has a nice rooftop right outside my window, and it's no-frills cheap. $280/month rent. Beats the hell out of $850/mo in NYC.

Drop Machu Picchu. Drop Patagonia. Drop festival in Rio de Janeiro. I'm going to India!

I'm switching tabs back-and-forth between launching nodes in aws and researching bus routes for my next 6 months in South America: Valparaíso, Buenos Aires, Los Ríos, Christmas in Torres del Paine (Patagonia), Montevideo, Festival in Rio de Janeiro. I'm excited as I read through the internet travel guides and multi-day, international bus routes.

My boss sends me a message. I expect he's going to yell at me for signing-off for an hour during lunch. Instead, he asks, "Would you be interested in working in India for a couple months?"

Drop the phone. Drop everything. Drop Machu Picchu. Drop Patagonia. Drop festival in Rio de Janeiro. I'm going to India!

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