In Shape

Brazil, August 2004

A previous note described the continual aerobic activity along the beaches and elsewhere. Our guide explained that since the weather in Rio is so pleasant year-round (the time of our visit corresponded to our February), Cariocas don't wear multiple layers of clothing that conceal the figure, or physique. (In fact, in Salvador da Bahia when I saw a man wearing a suit it was so unusual that I took his picture. Although admittedly, our tour route didn't include the financial districts.) Consequently, they are very conscious of their bodies—as is obvious during Carnaval—and the younger ones get in the best shape that they can to look good to the opposite, or the same, sex, as the case may be.

What initiated his commentary was his spotting a middle-aged runner with a spare tire. He remarked that "Then there are the ones that get divorced and have to get back into shape to get back into circulation".

Since this was after I had completed my runs, I hadn't happened to notice if everyone else was young, but maybe the earlier-mentioned class project was to find a really old geezer who was out there with the rest!

On the other hand, on our return from Poland in May we had a several-hour layover at JFK, so I sought out some refreshment. The nearest bar, Latitudes, displaying a prominent sign

was in a dimly-lit corner. I ordered a beer and the bartender asked for an ID. I thanked him and handed it over. He glanced at it and muttered "Oh ****."

© Copyright 2004 Jack Ludwick - All Rights Reserved