"I'll walk down Ipanema beach, have my picture taken, then post it with the caption: Girl from Ipanema," my close friend, April, said.
"But that's MY idea!" I replied.
"Fine, fine! We'll both have our Girl from Ipanema photo!" she said and we both burst out laughing.
That conversation took place four years ago when my friend and I had just decided we wanted to go to Brazil. But because of budget (or lack of it thereof), work, etc. etc., we never really got around to booking the trip. At one point, I felt sad at the thought that the trip may never ever take place anymore.
Until last year.
One hot November afternoon, I finally found myself walking down the Ipanema beach basking under the glorious Ipanema sun. I was beside myself with excitement, drinking in all the colors in the beach whose popularity was also magnified by Brazilian bossa nova, Garota de Ipanema (Girl from Ipanema).
TRIVIA: The song was inspired by a nineteen-year-old girl from the Ipanema District in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil named Heloísa Eneida Menezes Paes Pinto (now Helô Pinheiro). Everyday, the five-foot eight-inch brunette would pass by a bar-cafe called Veloso and would always catch the attention of the bar patrons. It was in 1962 that the composers noticed her and wrote a song about her. Ever since the song became popular, Helô has become a celebrity.* (Check out what Helô looks like here.)
And as expected, I also went trigger-happy, trying to capture the energy of the famous beach.
|The road to Ipanema.|
|Excited sun worshippers. Well, except for the little one haha.|
|Not for the bashful. Men and women of different shapes and sizes had no reservations about wearing skimpy swimsuits. The lesser, the better!|
After going around a bit, I decided to just relax and enjoy the Ipanema sun.
On our last day in Rio, my cousin and Melisa and I decided to hit the beach extra early. When we got there, Ipanema beach was almost empty.
We closed our eyes for a bit and when we woke up, I was surprised how fast the crowd grew.
|Bikinis for sale.|
|Buzzing with activity. The main road was also filled with people because, apparently, they close it to vehicles every Sunday to give way to runners and bikers.|
So, did I get my dream "Girl from Ipanema" shot? Well, the one I had in my mind was better (haha) but my camera and I took home much, much more colorful memories :)