Manchester University rising junior Jocelyn Hamilton is part of a D3 basketball trip to Brazil through USA Sports Tours and Events Aug. 4-13. Listed below are experiences from her trip to the South American country...
Game results update: US team's win Aug. 10 moved tour record to 2-2.
We woke up around 10 a.m. to head to Sugar Loaf which is another mountain. It was definitely scary taking the little cable cars up there and looking down at the ground.
After we got back from there, we went to the international market. There was just about everything there to buy, but due to lack of sleep we didn't stay long.
We took forever to get back to the hotel, because we got lost which is the worst in a different country because of the language barrier. But once we made it back, everyone passed out until dinner.
We went to a Brazilian steakhouse for dinner. This is a huge buffet along with servers bringing all sorts of different meat to your table for you to try. It was probably the best dinner we've had here.
Also tonight is our last night which is depressing. This has been such a great experience and I'll remember these girls forever!
We started off the day with a loud phone call to wake us up earlier than we wanted, and that's how we knew it was about to be a long day.
We took a bus to the Christ Statue which was way up on the top of the biggest mountain here in Rio. It was beautiful! We then went to a shopping center which was ginormous. We ate and then went straight to our game. Got the W by at least 20.
We started en route to Rio this morning around 6:30. I slept most of the way, but when I was up, I saw some beautiful sights.
We went through the mountains, which was scary but pretty to look at. The scene here in Rio is breathtaking. My hotel room is on the 19th floor and facing the ocean. There are mountains in the view as well. It finally feels like we are in a vacation spot in a different country.
August 8, 2013
We started off the day by visiting a cancer patient hospital.
The one thing I took out of that is never take your life for granted and realize how blessed you are. Just seeing them so excited to see us made my day, and we made their life I'm sure. One of the girls sang to us. ... it was beautiful!
We then played this afternoon and lost to the best team we've played by far. Tonight is our free night to just hang and have a good time, and we leave for Rio in the morning!
August 7, 2013
Today we finally got to catch up on our sleep and wake up whenever we wanted. So, of course, my roommate and I didn't roll out of bed till 11. We then spent the rest of the day relaxing by the pool because we didn't play till 8:30 p.m.
It was a much better match up and we came out with the W: 58-50. One thing I've realized from all these trips to and from the games is that we really do have it lucky in the U.S.
Every city is so chaotic and rough looking. The gyms are also interesting and very different from ours. They are generally cement buildings with cement bleachers and opened entrances. Also, another interesting fact is the women here wear spandex instead of basketball shorts. Culture really does play a big impact on style.
August 6, 2013
We finally arrived in Brazil this morning! It felt like all we did was drive on our charter bus. I didn't get much of a view due to napping the whole time I was on the bus.
By the time it was game time, we were all trying our best to wake up and be ready to go. Unfortunately it didn't go our way, but we did play a very good, fast aggressive team. I'm just ready to get tomorrow started!
The beginning of an amazing experience - August 5, 2013
The past couple of days in Orlando have been great to start the Brazilian trip. Yesterday, the team all met, and I love everyone by the way. Then we had practice late last night and again early this morning. After practice, we ate a delicious lunch at Chilis and have been in airplanes and airports the rest of the day! We are about to get on a red eye and will finally be in Brazil in the morning!