12 April 2012

Geribá Beach

If you start out from our own Manguinhos Beach and walk due south across the narrow isthmus neck of our peninsula you will find yourself on Geribá Beach in something like 20 minutes. Brace yourself. Geribá Beach is light years away from Manguinhos in tone and in style. Manguinhos, where we live, is a residential beach inside of a quiet, untouristed bay. Geribá Beach is open to the pounding ocean. It's surfer heaven, dude. It's a world of energy, youth, loud music, hordes of people and dogs. There are always volleyball and soccer games going on. Watch out! You've also got to duck the paddle balls and swerve around the bodyboards. Geribá is what Brazilians call the most badalada of the Búzios beaches. It's where it's happening.

Mark and I used to frequent Geribá Beach often when we first arrived here, and we always took our guests. We would go there at the end of the afternoon after the tourists had returned to their pousadas to get dolled up for dinner and nightclubbing in town. We would check ourselves in to one of the thatched-roof restaurants set up near the restinga, the low-lying vegetation at the back of the beach. We would order ourselves a grilled dourado (it's a fish, don't press me further). We would get ourselves crocked on caipirinhas and talk pure nonsense that sounded brilliant at the time, but that we wouldn't remember the next day. We would watch a beautiful sunset. Then a few years ago Brazil's environmental agency, IBAMA, pulled the charming restaurants off the beach and, in the name of environmental protection, imposed regulations about what could and could not be served at the beach, and where and how. In place of the fixed restaurants came modular plastic units, easy to take apart and put back together. Not to mention ugly. Out went the metal cutlery and china plates, in came paper plates and plastic cups (explain to me, please, how that's more environmentally sound). We stopped going to Geribá Beach, even for our early-morning power walk. Now we stick to Manguinhos, or we go elsewhere.

But we had to return to Geribá Beach to take some pictures for this post. We waited for the Easter holiday crowds to go home. And you know, it's truly a beautiful beach. I realized I'd been missing it.

Taken from a cliff high above Geribá Beach

Same cliff, bigger angle

Coming to the end of the Easter holiday

Thinning out, time to head home

A couple of stragglers

Ahh, now you're talking

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