Diary 19 (or beaches and dental floss!)26/10/2001 Its late at night when I find the hotel I´ve picked from the Lonely Planet, possibly the only one that´s feasible for me at the moment. It´s a dive but it has a bed and four walls - sleep!Hahaha, a dive, this place is the worst hotel that I have found in all my travels - quite literally a fleapit, complete with a sizeable family of the aforementioned fleas in the bed, all over my body and UUUURRRRGGGHHH! The district of Gloria outside isn´t any different, seedy was invented to describe this place. It´s Saturday, time for Copacabana. Unfortunately its drizzling all day, but at least the shopping is open, I can get some money changed and a full belly in the self-service restaurants. These are a godsend, pick what you want from an extensive buffet and get your plate weighed. It´s suprising how much you actually eat when you are starving like I am! Rio´s currency, the Real was devalued a couple of years ago so it´s all nowhere near as expensive as I thought. Time to find some alternative accomodation.Found some, but too late to check out of the fleapit, so first thing this morning I take a thorough cold shower and traipse off to the Copa Praia, the youth hostel 5 blocks from the beach in Copacabana. Today will set the pattern for the rest of the week. Get to the beach by about noon, swim, fend off the vendors, sunbathe and retire to the hostel. After dark, its beer, beer and more beer! What more could a boy ask for, except for some good friends to share it all with - enter Barbara, Suzanna, Sheema, Dave, Fabian, Mike and everyone else who wanders through the haze over the next 5 nights.Tuesday dawns and it´s nice and sunny so back down to the beach when I crawl out of bed at midday. More beer tonight, and a trip down to the beachfront to sing at the karaoke beachbar til the small hours.More beach, but this time on Ipanema beach for a change of scene. Bought a bodyboard and got completely wiped out by some of the most amazing waves that I have ever seen. I wish I could surf!Back to Copacabana, time to relax in sun - it´s over 27 degC and I can feel the sun cooking me. Thank god for factor 25 sun cream. Tonight, outside the hostel there´s a club for ?????. It´s adapted from an old fighting technique used by the slave and seems to be one part dancing, one part martial art and one part bending your body into contortions. Great fun to watch, especially the tiny kids 5 or 6 years ¨fighting¨ the older ones.And it was over so quickly, my last day in Rio, so its back on the beach after a quick trip back to the point between Ipanema and Copacabana with my camera to take some piccies of the surfers - but there are only bodyboarders out there this morning. Never mind - time to sun myself for a couple of hours and then head back to the hostel to pack. My plane leaves in 6 hours, so I´m off to catch the last of these rays. My main memories of Rio: dental floss bikinis - they really are THAT small, mad traffic with everyone pretending that they are in a Grand Prix and great beer - what else.Love and hugs, see you all soon enough!