Starting to have withdraw symptoms...
Thu 3 Jul 2014 - Thu 3 Jul 2014 80 °F
Ok, so it is probably good to start weening off of soccer - after all, the Cup will be over in a couple of weeks. And we return in a few short days. But for now, we head out to the National Park of Brasilia. It is promoted as have a swimming area, wild animals (monkeys), nature trails and some water features.
We had an inkling that we were in trouble when we had to show the taxi driver where it was on the map. We drove past some areas that we had not ventured to yet, and tried to grab some snaps from the car. The Os Guerreiros sculpture was much smaller than we had imagined.
And when we arrived, it was a pretty bleak looking place - though not deserted, certainly not what it was boasted as. But we got out, not knowing how we would get back. We asked about where the trails were and such - but only got back that it was beautiful (and it started outside of the fenced area).
We walk for quite a while on a paved road - questioning ourselves all along the way. We keep seeing some signs that there could be animals (anteaters, foxes, etc.) along the way, but the fields were dry and kind of drought like along the path. We hiked for a good while before we find more directional signs and some old buildings.
We did see this large ant hills - and there were signs about anteaters everywhere, but not one to be found. Perhaps they were only out at a certain time of day or something.
Finally, as we are nearing desperation, we find the sensational water that we were looking for... (ever see the movie, History of the World, Part 1?)
We about to give up and just head back when we try one more path. It looks promising as we start to enter a forest-like area. We finally find the forest trail and walk the loop. Lots of decently interesting wooded areas, but no wildlife other than a few tweeting birds.
We hear the distinctive knocking of a woodpecker - which is the end of the excitement for the nature hike. Can you even see him? I think the video (with sound and movement) might be better.
This is the closest we could find to a monkey:
We head back to the pool. The water is a bit stagnant and very cold. Ivan braves it, but it does seem worth it to Diana and myself. After a quick swim, Ivan gets out of the water and a group of kids starts up a conversation. They tease him about Brazil being Columbia and me about cheering for Belgica (Belgium). It was all quite fun (you'll have to see the video sometime).
We did run in some Argentinian people that said they wanted to buy our extra tickets - so maybe the trip will be worth it? On to a locally acclaimed restaurant, Mamgai, it is quite interesting from the outside. As well as another restaurant just next store.
Food befuddled again, we get a quasi-decent buffet meal - we thought we could order off of the menu, and we were apparently there right before closing time (so things were on their last leg). It was very interesting place inside as well, but the food was not exceptional (but perhaps we did it wrong again).
Back to the hotel to rest up some and see if the people show up to buy the tickets. They do and they are very glad to get them, nice to have that done already. We use a different book for a recommendation for dinner - we head out to the not-yet-explored North side of town. The taxi takes us to yet again, a mostly deserted looking area (we sat in the car while the cab driver made sure it was the right place). It was a cozy little place. The waiter tried to be helpful/friendly - but told us he did not speak Spanish or English. The food was very good - but it was really surprising that this would place would make it on a list of 3-4 places to go to in Brasilia (they had to call us a cab to get back home).