We arrived in Maceio around 1pm on Saturday and met Taciana who was already there and rode to our beach house in nearby Paripueira. Well, on the way Taciana explained that the house was not in fact on the beach as had been promised, but that it was "really close." Oh well, not the end of the world by any means. Our anticipation grew as we approached the house which ended up being beautiful on the outside with a beautiful patio and luscious coconut trees, but the inside was rather murky. Oh, and the water pump was broken so we had no running water. 12 people in a house with 3 bedrooms and no running water. Most people would have ran for the nearest hotel.
But we had come way too far to worry about sanitation, it was time to enjoy the party. The first night we took part in a parade (a picture of our group during the parade is above) and it was quite an experience. Lots of people dancing to loud samba music lots of kissing going on, which Taciana warned me about as we neared the parade. Apparently it's common for random strangers to kiss during Carnaval!
That night we went out walking among the streets again and for some reason there were tons of men dressed in drag. It was really interesting to see considering from my experience the straight men here have been rather homophobic. Two of the guys in our group dressed up in skirts, bikini tops and had full makeup - it was hilarious.
The final two days we did go to a nearby beach that Taciana's aunt and uncle have a beach house at and it was gorgeous. Thankfully we were also able to take showers there. Taciana's Aunt fed me so many delicious foods I can't even remember the names but she also fed me lots of cachaca and then we played dress-up and danced the day away. It really was the life.
We returned to Maceio the day after carnival ended and recovered from the previous 4 days. The following day we visited Gunga Beach and it was absolutely gorgeous. Needless to say I definitely got a tan!
I'm back in Vitoria now packing up to leave for Sao Paulo tomorrow. Although I'm sure it will be much more tame than Carnaval, I know it will still be a great time and I'm super excited for my very good friend Evan to be visiting for the conference as well.