Me on the steps at Lapa, Rio de Janeiro’s party district. On Fridays people from all over the city, even the far away Favelas, come to drink and dance at the many bars and clubs that line Lapa’s main strip, where party doesn’t start til well past 11:00pm. Getting there is easy, from the western part of the city where most travelers stay (near the beaches of Botafogo, Ipanema, and Copacabana), get to the nearest main street and hop on any of the small vans heading east, they are cheaper and faster than the big buses, and they come by often. The tiles of the steps I’m sitting on are tended to by a man who continuously changes out old or broken ones. Lapa is a really amazing area where all the diverse peoples of Rio de Janeiro can be seen in their element, spilling into the street dancing to local samba bands. Plus, the Caipirinhas are outstanding!