Friday, May 8, 2009

Trip to Ilha Grande

Well, I am having troubles moving my pictures around, so we'll just start with this one. Pretend you're speed reading, that way the order of ideas is less important than the main ideas...When you're done reading, you'll have the whole story.

We found this earthworm looking guy on our hike. I was thinking he was one of those legless lizard, or eyeless snakes. I don't know....he was just taking a nap for all to see.

Noah thought we better put in a picture so our friends will remember us. We're at a fun family age right now. We aren't limited by little kids, but our big kids are still doing stuff with us, largly because Brazil doesn't have as much teen activities going on. (Opposite from us, their high school just gets harder and harder. Their senior year is school, Monday through SATURDAY, 8:00am to 5 or 6:00, no joke.)

This was the aquaduct system that feeds the little city still. It is almost 200 years old. The island used to have a big prison on it too, but that has been removed to promote tourism.

Two weeks ago, our friend Mike McMullin and his two boys, Andrew and Benjamin, came to Rio to visit. Our friends, Nilton and Elizangela, took us all to a really great island nearby called, Ilha Grande--creative name.

When we got to the dock to sail out, there were people all over because Sylvester Stalone was there making a movie, to be called, "Mercenary" I think. See that plane? He was in it.
Just so you know--it was filmed in Maragatiba, Brazil--not Cuba. We never saw him, but because all the local boats had to stay out of filming, our less than 2 hour trip took 2 and a half. A lady in our ward has a job on the film, stunt doubling for the main gal. Cool.
This is a picture of the kids stacked on the middle section of this little boat. It sounded really cool to go out through the sea on this quaint little boat. But I found out that I am a pathetic land-lubber. But my friend, Elizangela seen above at the beginning of the trip, was barfing with me later, so at least I wasn't the only one. BTW, I had to ask for life jackets. Nobody makes you do anything in Brazil safely wise. It kind of cracks me up...Our country everything is regulated. Here, stuff like this is just, do it youself. A boat full of kids on a 2 hour ride in the ocean, well, you want life jackets? My kids didn't appreciate my request. Note that Jens is "holding" his, just in case.
This is the boys waiting for the ship to come. It was actually a 2 hour drive to the port, and then 2 1/2 in the boat so it was kind of a long morning.
I wish you could have seen the panorama leaving this bay. All the lovely, colorful stucco houses. It was so picturesque!

Anyway, I kind of forget we live in a tropical paradise, because we always have homework, and I spend 3 hours driving people to work, school, and seminary almost everyday. But Ilha Grande was awesome. We went between 2 holiday weeks, so it was in full operation, but there was no one there, tourist wise. Ideal.

There were lovely black beaches, great hikes, great food. We stayed in a camping site near a little creek and were entertained by probably a hundred 6-10 inch crabs that gave the kids plenty to chase.I didn't get a big enough picture here, but this was the "slaves bathing hole", where they would bring whole companies of chained slaves to be cleaned after their horrific sea voyages. (For a super movie on this, see Amazing Grace) It was very beautiful, but I felt a little melancholy thinking of it's past.
There was a water slide just past the boys in the front to the right. It was great swimming, and the mouth of a really long hike. We didn't KNOW it was a 6 kilometer hike to the waterfalls until we were about 3 kilometers in. We'll have to try again next year....


  1. Coolness! We're totally jealous! We should have been there with you. Anyhow, we sure miss you guys. It looks like you all are looking good, even your pet worm Hermin. Oh, is your concluding statement an announcement or just a way to end your narrative. We love you tons!
    The Rindlisbachers

  2. Wow that is soooo awesome. I am very jealous, and I would love to one day visit. That wormy thing is crazy. I love the boys on the harbor, beautiful shots.

  3. Aww.....look at your family!! I miss you all! Happy Mother's Day Kristin!

  4. How Fun! I am glad you added all the explainations for what was going on. And I am also glad I don't live in a tropical paradise with worms the size of China! Yikes!

    We love you guys, It is so fun to see how grown up the kids are. Love Cass

  5. Hey Kristen, just wanted to let you know about my blog. Add it to your list. I miss you guys a ton. I can't wait for you to come home.

  6. Cool posting! It was fun to see the water aqueducts, worms, etc. Love you!

  7. It so good to get out and enjoy what your "home away from home" has to offer. All the more memorable for everyone. We sure miss having you around. I love to hear all you guys are doing though!

  8. Hi Kristen,
    I'm just poppin in to say hello. Your kids are so grown up! What happened? The last time I saw you, Jens was a fussy baby in the swing!! And now he is a kid.
    Anyway, it's nice to see your beautiful family.
    Love, Kim (Sims) Smith