South Of The Equator
So I may have this chance to go to Brazil. It is not a totally done deal yet, but I am working on it. I am in the research phase.
A friend of mine is having a wedding party there. His wife's family live there This means there will be a party of some sort. And the party will be in a smaller town, in Brazil's wine country. Up in the mountains.
The general idea so far is I would fly form Miami to Rio de Janeiro. I think this means "River Of Janeiro". Or something like that.
From Rio I would have to Porto Alegre, which is in the south of Brazil. Close to Argentina actually. And from there it would be a land trek to wherever the party is to be at.
I would not get to see the Amazon River - unless the skies are clear when I fly over it. Assuming that the jet does not arrive to Rio from sea - which it probably will.
I might need to get a Yellow Fever shot. And I might also have to get the swine flu shot. Or something like that. When I get the travel visa Ill have to ask the Brazilian Consulate what the hell is up with that shit.
Malaria - the souvenir you never forget. Got to love it.
And there is more! Since most of Brazil lies south of the equator, the night sky is totally different. Seasons are reversed (when it is winter in the north it is summer in the south), but that is not all that is inverted. The moon appears to be inverted too. So do all the constellations visible from both hemispheres. Also, the winter constellations become summer constellations.
The circumpolar constellations (the constellations you can see year round - like the Big Dipper) are not visible at all. The southern hemisphere has its own set of circumpolar constellations which can not be seen north of the equator.
There is also a chance I would be far enough south to see the Southern Lights. That would be ass kicking cool.
Also, in Brazil booze is not taxed - and it is cheap as shit. The whole country runs on alcohol. Literally. They do not use gas in cars down there, vehicles run on booze. E85 is common, and there are even many stations selling all alcohol fuel. Or as I like to call it - Vodka. I am sure they denature it or something so you can not drink it.
I would probably bring back a lot of booze. US Customs will let me bring so much back for free - I think 5 or so bottles. Anything over that and I would have to declare it and pay the duty. No big deal. Even with a duty of a couple of bucks per bottle it would still be cheap. And many times as long as you declare what you have, and you are not bringing back hundreds of gallons - they do not care. if you try to hide it then get busted - they DO care. So just declare everything.
The research phase continues.