Saturday, April 2, 2011

Lost on Ilha Grande




I wasn't ever, actually, lost.

But Ilha Grande could just as well have been The Island--the trails, the beaches, the rocks.

I could have been lost, if I had chosen to include hiking one of the many jungle trails over the mountainous terrain in my list of activities. But I did not. No, my activities were restricted to boat rides, beach days, snorkeling, swimming, and body boarding. (I made a whimper of an attempt at surfing, but quickly discovered that I am neither strong nor nimble enough for it. But heck, it's good to have goals!)

Well, there was that mini-trek to arrive at the stunning Lopes Mendes: a 30-minute boat ride followed by a 30-minute trail that ends...


(I could just hear the exploring and traveling theme from the show in my mind!)




...at this glorious, pristine beach with crackly, crisp white sand and postcard-perfect water.








Out looking for the Statue of Taweret

A bit geeky, I realize, but I entertained myself many times during my stay daydreaming myself into scenes, imagining funny dialog and episode references in my head. Luckily, I met another solo traveler and fellow Lostie--the Argentinean Guillermo--with whom I was able to share all the silly sitcom banter on the last day. I was terribly annoyed, though, that I forgot my camera that day, because we spotted a Charlie Pace ringer on the boat to Lopes Mendes and a perfect John Locke seated Indian-style on the beach, staring contemplatively at the sea. (Honestly! At least I had a witness to those surreal sightings.)



Vitor and Aní (Thank you!)

I stayed at the Biergarten Hostel. Vitor, its owner, is pleasant, helpful, resourceful, and fun. His girlfriend Aní is delightful and makes some mean breakfast cakes! I really appreciated their friendliness and welcoming nature (as well as the others: Reneido, Leandro and Alex). Moreover, the location was perfect, the place was clean, the bed was far more comfortable than usual by hostel standards, and the restaurant is the best bargain I found in Vila do Abraão. Highly recommended!



Aní, Guillermo, and the uber-entertaining Scottish Katie

Lastly, here are some outtakes that pretty well sum up life on the island.



A street sign marks a sandy path in Vila do Abraão


So small, that the CEP (Código Endereço Postal, or zip code) is 00000-000, but they've included it anyway!

Vitor and Ani suggested I go live there for a while--the islanders need teachers. It's a thought worth entertaining.