Last night we decided to forego the funk party in the favela as it a) was expensive without including drinks, b) took place in a favela so far they couldn’t show us on the map, and c) would have required that we stay out until 5. We figured it would be better to save our energy for other evenings.
Instead, we headed off to dinner at an outdoor restaurant just down the block. Once again, we went for a tapas-style approach to the meal so we could share different things. No disappointments: in addition to caipirinhas, we enjoyed meat fritters, some salade nicoise, steak, grilled veggies, and sort of a farofa (the fried flour) covered scrambled egg. All was delicious; in Brazil, they keep flavors pretty simple. They just throw on some salt and grill the meat, so we really got to savor the flavor of the steak.
Our plan after dinner was to buy some beer and head to the beach, but the markets had closed by the time we finished dinner. However, as we headed towards the beach, we passed a samba bar that appeared to have a line outside the door, and we thought that might be fun to try later.
The beach proved to be a disappointment in terms of providing drinks; it was practically deserted (quite a change from the daytime). The large waves crashing in the moonlight along with the outline of the lights in the favela in the mountain to the west made for beautiful scenery, though.
We decided to head back to the hostel and get another drink there. At this point it was about 11:15. We arrived to find the downstairs full of people but the bar closed! We quickly formed a new plan: drop everything we didn’t need and head to the samba bar.
Fail #4 happened at the samba bar. They wouldn’t let us in because it was closing at midnight! Lesson learned: Rio does in fact have limits on drinking and fun. (I find it terribly ironic that the Green Leafe in Williamsburg stays open longer on Sunday than anything we experienced in Rio.)
Defeated, we returned to the hostel and settled in for the night. We now possess the three bottom bunks in our room, which makes things significantly more comfortable for us. The room is quite small; three sets of three-tiered bunk beds line the walls, leaving an open space in the center that’s maybe 5 x 9 feet. Controlling the floor helps!