Brazil Begins

Today technically marks day 3 of our Brazillian journey but the first 1.75 days were mainly spent getting to Brazil. Seriously, a bed and shower have never felt so satisfying after being in an airport/on an airplane for 40 some hours.

But as soon as we arrived in Ciuba we checked into the hotel and headed straight for Brazillian BBQ...which was obviously amazing as it sounds. They just keep bringing you meat and about 90% of it is delicious. I did have some that tasted terrible. I think it may have been the hump of a Nelore bovine.

This was grilled pineapple and it was DELICIOUS. I don't even like pineapple and I devoured it. It has a cinnamon sugar coating on the outside that was awesome. 

Chocolate cake that had a truffle on top. SO GOOD. Also very rich, like four of us shared this. 

That's the whole group. Dr. Nichols (far right) is obviously very pleased we are taking a photo.

Today we spent the day on the Pantanal. Google it. It's a gorgeous wetland full of wildlife that they use to graze cattle on. We road horses and boats through the lands at a resort like place (not at the same time). Think more camping resort less hawaiian resort. We also saw MONKEYS. It felt like a cross between a jungle and what I imagine an African landscape is like also crossed with a swamp.

This Nelore has had some cross breeding and personally, I think he is rocking it. (Aka normally they are white, but this one is cool because he is dark with spots)

Proud to say I have now photographed monkeys! That's pretty neat! 

He's not as thrilled about the photos as I am. 

So many gaters..... For real though, there are about a zillion of these guys out on the Pantanal! Cayman boots for days! Except these guys aren't really hunted out here. 

View from the boat. P.S. these are piranha infested waters. 

That's all folks!!

I love visiting other countries and learning other cultures to see the similarities and differences, especially in agriculture. Today, as we were enjoying the scenery we came across a calf that had been bitten by a snake and was dying. The tour guide/cowboy jumped off his horse and determined what had happened and then left the calf to die. Two times, with two different cowboys we passed this dying calf but the men did nothing. To them, the won't kill the calf or hunt the snake that killed it (and apparently the snake has taken down several other calves) because it's part of the circle of life and natural environment here and they don't want to interfere.

It was heartbreaking to see the calf suffer and we had an interesting conversation about animal welfare because I know if that had been my animal, or any other rancher I know in the states it would have been euthanized instead of left to let the poison work it's way to the calf's death. However, it gave an interesting perspective and a powerful reminder that suffering is a natural part of life.

Sorry to leave you on a depressing note, I promise Brazil has been wonderful (I even napped in a hammock today!). Stay tuned to see/read more of our adventures in South America!!