“Bom dia” is Portuguese for good morning, which is as good a tagline as any for these little morning blogs I plan on doing each day during the Olympics. It’s also one of the few Portuguese phrases I have at my command (along with thank you and excuse me) so I might as well put it to use.
Over the course of the games, I’ll be posting one of these every (or close to every) morning with a tidbit from Rio and a look at the day ahead. Right now there’s not much of the latter, so we’ll focus on the former. And there’s no better way to do that than the quintessential Rio experience, a run on Copacabana Beach.
Rio has a body-mad, fitness-mad culture, and that’s apparent from the people, even late at night, who run and bike along its beach paths. The little workout stations no one in America ever uses are crowded here, even after dark, when groups of people are also putting themselves through boot-camp style workouts in the sand.
After waking up for the first time in Brazil this morning -- I arrived on an overnight flight Monday morning -- I joined the crowd on the foot/bike path for a quick 3-miler to sweat out some of the lingering jet lag. The plus: Views of the broad sand beach (including the two Brazilian naval ships hovering just offshore). The minus: Exhaust from the cars and trucks on the busy Avenida Atlantica.
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At the north end of the beach, NBC has a big studio where the “Today” show (I think) was broadcasting live. This early, the little beachside bars and restaurants were all closed, and the beach volleyball venue -- as finished as it’s ever going to get after a last-minute flurry of construction -- sits idle for now, although it’s swarming with television-production people, many of whom arrived yesterday. It was relatively quiet in the Olympic village yesterday; with another big wave of journalists arriving this morning and tomorrow, things will start to get busy.
As for the less rosy side of things, this story about uncertainly surrounding the Brazilian teen arrested for ISIS connections, by McClatchy’s Kevin Hall, is worth a read.
THE DAY AHEAD: Still not a whole lot going on, officially speaking. The U.S. field hockey team has a press conference at the Main Press Center this evening, which will no doubt be dominated by questions about UNC’s response to the NCAA. The men’s basketball team doesn’t make its first appearance until Thursday, a day before the opening ceremonies, with its first game Saturday against China.