June 8, 2013
Carly Warner is next up in a series that will outline U-M's 13-day tour of Brazil and Argentina, which will include nine matches across the two South American countries.
After our first night in the smallest hotel beds you can imagine, you would think that it would be easy to wake up for breakfast before it ends at 10. Unfortunately, both Brittany Lee and I missed our alarm and didn't wake up until 10:10, only 20 minutes before we had to leave. Luckily, when we walked down five flights of stairs to the lobby there was still some breakfast left for us to grab something.
The plan for the day was to chill at the beach until we had to leave for our match at 4:30. The walk to beach was amazing. Just being able to see all the landscape was beautiful. Once we got settled on the beach, we were able to see The Christ Redeemer statue, which was a sight to see. Being on the beach in Brazil for the first time was definitely an experience for everyone. Mostly all the men were wearing speedos or very short shorts and the women were wearing thongs. Being Americans you think we would hate it, or feel uncomfortable, but we loved it! We loved the fact that no one cared what other people thought about their bodies.
After we settled in we all knew the first thing to do was run into the ocean. When it was time to lay out, if you wanted to fall asleep that wasn't going to happen. There were street vendors walking around almost every minute. Lexi Erwin, Ally Davis, and I couldn't get enough of it, we couldn't stop laughing. They start whistling and yelling at you in Portuguese and we couldn't understand a word they were saying. When it got close to 1 it was time to get some lunch at a little restaurant nearby. The food was very good and I wouldn't doubt it if we went there tomorrow for lunch.
Now it was time to shower off all the sand and get on the bus to play the Flamengo volleyball team. Once we got to their facility they gave us a tour of the whole place. It was very interesting because it was one club with sports other than volleyball like soccer, swimming, basketball, etc. After the tour we had to get ready for the match. It didn't take very long and the game finally began. After a long four-set match, we finally came out with a victory. Playing against the Brazilians was very different. They are a little shorter than our team but they are very scrappy. They were also not very happy when we were beating them. It was easy to see that their team dynamic was different than ours. Whenever they would lose a point, they would all just yell at each other. Not only was the team a little different, the gym and the ball were very hard to get used to as well. We were able to figure it out after a while but it was still hard to deal with.
The team we played was hosting us for dinner, so after the game we had to quickly take showers and get to the mini restaurant they had next door. Sitting next to some of the players was very interesting. Some of them knew pretty good English so it wasn't too hard to speak with them.
We didn't stay very long at dinner because we had to get back to the hotel to get ready for the samba show we were going to later. None of us really knew what to expect so we were all very excited. The show had many different routines and all of them were very extravagant. The outfits were crazy. They were either really skimpy or they had these big dresses with feathers coming out the sides. The music was really good and it was a great experience, and I'm glad Kelly was able to bring us there. The show ended at around 11:30 so we were all pretty exhausted by the end and ready to go back to the hotel.
Today is our day off so we are all really excited for the day ahead.
For more on U-M's tour of Brazil and Argentina, including game results, blogs, photos and video, visit our Michigan Volleyball in South America page.