|Carnival, Rio de Janeiro. Photo courtesy of www.besttourism.com|
In a predominantly Roman Catholic country, Rio's Carnival represents a farewell to excess and the start of a time of religious discipline as Lent begins. Brazilians, and Rio de Janeirans in particular, really know how to bid a rousing farewell and for four incredible days, excess is what it's all about.
Nowhere in the world will you find a party indulged with more enthusiasm and celebrated with more sparkle, more glitz, and more non-stop whistle-blowing fervor. For this I will join 90,000 other revellers in Rios grand Sambadrome. Samba Schools parade thousands of dancers, musicians and elaborately draped and adorned floats in a competition that takes the entire year and buckets of money to prepare for. It will be worth the effort as the winning school gains tremendous fame and accolades as well as financial benefit for the poor communities they represent.
This Fantasy Friday is an opportunity to experience life and culture with some of the joy in celebration that has been a little lacking in my stoic British roots and North American upbringing. Bring on the glamor, the rhinestones - the samba!