Ilha Grande

Trip Start Jan 2003
Trip End Dec 2003

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Wednesday, January 21, 2004

Day 330 - 332 - Ilha Grande

This is more like it! Sandwiched between two days burning ourselves on a beach frequently rated as one of the top ten in the world we spent a day diving. Learning to dive on the Great Barrier Reef and subsequently diving in vanuatu, where dive magazines consistently recommend, has set our expecations unrealistically high. It was still enjoyable and we saw some, if not many, interesting fish and it was a relief to discover that in the four months tha we hadn' gone underswimming (as the lady at our Pousada calls it) we haven't forgotten everything we've been taught.

Lopes Mendes beach, where we spent the 'bread' days is fully deserving of its reputation. Years ago I used to grade beaches according o whether they were sand or stone. At the start of this trip I'd taken it a little further but now anything that's not white, fine enough to clean jewellery with and next to a deep blue and inviting sea will not be graced with my presence. Beach snobbery a its most pertinent! I may well be disappointed with my next day trip to Southend or Brighton!

in addition to the stated reasons, Ilha Grande has taken a turn for the better due to other factors. Claire, an Irish girl we met in Rio (one of the few we genuinely liked) has arrived with throngs of Brazilian weekenders making the recreation of people watching infinitely more fascinating. New observations include: Brazilian men are exceedingly lucky in the girlfriends they attrac, they're also very hairy and all Brazilians are obsessed with buying T-shirts with the names of the places they've travelled to emblazened on them. Admittedly these aren't life changing remarks but I thought it would be too mean for this entry to be a minute by minute account of how I lay on a beautiful beach until I got hot, then went for a swim, then laid down on the beach again etc etc.
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