Yesterday we had our first taste of Carnaval in Rio. We woke up to the sounds of live music out our back window. At first we didn’t know where the music was coming from, but about 20 minutes later, it all made sense. There was a “bloco” happening at 10am just behind our apartment! Blocos are essentially street parties, and thus, a large group of people with a walking band were parading down the street. Everyone was dressed up in some kind of costume or outfit.
Carnaval doesn’t “technically” start until next weekend. However, we’re realizing that there is a long build up to that weekend. We decided to get our own first experience with the blocos yesterday. We read about a large bloco in a neighborhood called Santa Teresa. This particular bloc0 was stationary, unlike the one this morning that paraded down the street. There was a decent sized stage with live music, and people covered all the surrounding streets. It really was just one giant party in the street. Most people were dressed up. There is no real theme to the costumes… just whatever colorful and crazy things you want to wear.
We have one week of school, then Carnaval starts Friday night and continues through the next week. We’re looking forward to seeing the transformation of the city over the next two weeks.