RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Brazilian Carnival could be called a hungry mosquito’s dream — five days of non-stop street parties that bring together millions of revelers in an inviting mass of bare ankles, uncovered legs and denuded torsos. So the mosquito-borne Zika virus might be expected to dampen this year’s debauchery.
But despite warnings to cover up and slather on repellent, the show went on as it always has, in just a sprinkling of sequins and a few puffs of feather. Pants, long-sleeve shirts and bug spray, they say, are antithetical to the hedonistic, out-of-control spirit of Carnival.
“We need joy,” said Angela Pessanha, a self-described “Carnival nut” and owner of a home furnishings store. “And Carnival is the easiest way of doling out a stiff dose of joy to everyone.”