Prawns and Caipirinhas

      23/2/2023       Next-->

"Oh dear' I thought as I picked my way through the giant prawn, eating it with 'hens teeth' as the saying goes.

It had looked gorgeous on the skewer and after one glass of Caipirinha
we were ready to try anything!! Caipirinha is Brazil's national drink, and this one was heavily laced with cachaca which is Brazil's national alcohol, distilled from sugar cane juice.

'Cut half of a lime into small wedges. Place the lime and sugar into an old-fashioned glass and muddle well. Top the drink with cachaca and lots of ice and stir well.'

Now back to the giant prawn, served Espetada style, it arrived next to my deck chair on Copacabana Beach in Brazil - the wiry Brazilian had served it on a portable grill slung over his shoulder. Liberally sprinkled with Piri Piri sauce it looked delicious. But which educated girl would eat a skewer full of prawns, on a beach, at midday under the blazing sun Well I did, and as I ate it I muttered to myself 'I am going to die of food poisoning today!' Needless to say here we are still here with glorious memories of a day on the most famous beach in the world.

A four kilometre stretch of yellow-gold sand, Copacabana beach is one of Rio de Janeiro's most iconic and visited attractions. Once a small crescent of sand, it was transformed into the thriving, tourist hotspot it's known as today and we soon discovered how Copacabana beach became one of the world's most famous coastlines.

Edged by busy kiosks and towering palm trees, Copacabana beach is a frenzy of activity: sunbathers routinely switch sides to get the perfect tan; beach vendors brave Rio's relentless sun to sell drinks, food and souvenirs; sports enthusiasts play games of football, surf, run, or slam a volleyball over the net. On a summer's weekend, the place gets packed and beach-goers will find themselves jostling for a spot on the sand, yet the crowds bring life and energy to the shoreline and the background samba beats puts a spring in everyone's step.

No need to move a muscle as the happy vendors bring everything, including prawns on skewers, right to your deck chair. There were bowls of fresh corn, cut from the cob, dripping with butter, green coconuts filled with refreshing coconut water, tapioca biscuits, Feijoada- a type of bean stew with pork, Queijo Coalho - aged salty cheese grilled on a skewer, and of course the famous iced Yerba Mate tea served in stainless steel canisters with ice. Vendors from the nearby kiosks arrived frequently with delicious ice cold Caipirinhas, Strawberry Daiquiris and Passionfruit Cocktails, beautifully decorated with mint, pineapple, strawberries and limes.

And then there is Capeta, which means 'devil' in Portuguese, is a wickedly good concoction dreamed up in the north of Brazil and often drunk at Carnival time. It consists of cachaca, condensed milk, cinnamon, honey, and guarana - a tropical berry native to the Brazilian Amazon that is known for its energising effects.

Still more vendors arrive with bikinis, sarongs, wraps and shirts for sale, made from fine cotton in vibrant colours. There are vast displays of Panama hats, sunglasses and souvenirs - it is indeed a beach full of colourful personality.
Needless to say Rio is even more famous for the Sugar Loaf Mountain, and of course the Statue of Christ the Redeemer on the Corcovado.

It was an extraordinary trip to Antarctica, heading South from Buenos Aires on the one side of South America, around the Cape Horn, through the dreaded Drake Passage and up the other side of the continent through the Chilean Fjords ending in San Antonia which is the fascinating vibrant Santiago port.

Full marks and bounteous thank-yous, to our Tour Maestro Barry B. for fulfilling so many dreams with this once in a lifetime trip and to our fellow Ancient Mariners Adrienne, Dave, Lynn, Caroline, Barry W, Trudy and Glenne.

KGVI is looking for card offcuts, any size or shape for teaching our
deaf kids with a special method called Red Star. Its an excellent
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please contact Inez Hussey
Or phone 0772999343 Samantha

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