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World

Escape The Winter Woes With A Glimpse Of The Rio Shoreline

KELLY MCEVERS, HOST:

If you live in the east, middle or south of the country, you probably need a big coat today thanks to the latest winter storms. Yep, baby, it's cold outside, which is why we offer you this.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: Hot stuff.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN #1: Hot like an oven.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #2: It's getting hot in here.

MCEVERS: Let us distract you from winter with some sounds of summer. That's what season it is in Brazil right now. NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro sent this audio postcard from Rio de Janeiro.

LOURDES GARCIA-NAVARRO, BYLINE: Thiago Borba is 20 years old, and he's at the beach with his sister and mother. They're sitting in deck chairs in the sun, soaking up the rays. This has been one of the hottest summers on record here, with electricity cuts and drought. So naturally, the discussion falls on how to chill out.

THIAGO BORBA: (Speaking Portuguese).

GARCIA-NAVARRO: "The only way to stay cool," he says, "is to head the beach."

GABRIELLA BORBA: (Speaking Portuguese).

GARCIA-NAVARRO: "The beach is the best," his sister Gabriella agrees, "to feel refreshed." Just nearby, you can hear the sound of cooking fish. Chito de Prainha has been grilling seafood here for 30 years. In fact, he only refers to himself by his first name and the name of the beach we're at, Prainha.

CHITO DE PRAINHA: (Speaking Portuguese).

GARCIA-NAVARRO: "We marinate the fish in white wine, olive oil, garlic, fresh herbs and onion," he tells me. "We serve a freshly caught snapper, red snapper and striped bass. The fish is sliced open and put flat onto grilling cages over hot coals, where they spit and sizzle."

PRAINHA: (Speaking Portuguese).

GARCIA-NAVARRO: "We do this with a lot of love," Chito says. "All of us who work here have been doing this for a long time," he says. And, of course, no visit to the Brazilian beach would be complete without a caipirinha.

PRAINHA: Caipiroska.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Or in my case, a caipiroska, which is made with vodka instead of cachaca. Barman Jose Matos chops the limes, adds vodka...

That's a lot of alcohol.

...Sugar and ice, next, and then shakes it up.

He says the caipirinha's ready. And, of course, in the name of journalistic integrity, I have to try it. Let's see. That is a tasty caipirnha.

Lourdes Garcia-Navarro, NPR News. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.