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Avery Ashwill

Hailing from Austin, Texas, Avery loves riding her bike and seeing live music. After spending time in The Dominican Republic and Peru, she became passionate about environmental sustainability. At home, Avery is the co-captain of the rowing team and spends as much time as possible near the water. She is looking forward to immersing herself in a new culture and meeting new people in the coming year.


Feeling Fine with Time on the Mind

April 23, 2013

You learn a lot in a school year, but I’ve learned more about myself in the last seven months than I ever did sitting in any one of my high school classes. (Sorry, teachers everywhere.) Over the summer of 2012 I has all these great plans for my future. I’m going to go to Brazil,...

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Shadows across the porch

April 2, 2013

I see time in the shadows moving across my porch, and smell time elapse as the bread bakes in the oven. But I only feel time when I realize that I am bumping into seconds and minutes and days. Or when I’m getting closed in by weeks and pounding on the doors of month.

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A Day in Her Life

February 26, 2013

Check out this video I made about a day in Minnie’s life.

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Measuring Success

February 26, 2013

I came to Brazil with a yard stick. Physically, no, that would be absurd, but mentally, yes. I had this idea that I would use this yard stick to measure my success. There were three elements that I decided should count for one foot of my yard stick: apprenticeship, host family, and personal growth. So...

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How to be Brazilian in 5 Easy Steps (Beginner’s Course)

January 29, 2013

1. Hygiene is essential. Have you showered today? If not, do so immediately. Did you shower before you ate breakfast, lunch and dinner? Did you shower before you left the house and upon your return? If not, start incorporating these methods into your daily routine. By looking good and smelling good at all times, your...

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Where in the World Am I?

November 29, 2012

No, this is not some uplifting, inspiring post about identity as a North American living in Latin America. This is actually just a post about where in the world I am. I figured this is obligatory, because I’ve been in Brazil since September and haven’t even mentioned my whereabouts. And that’s just inconsiderate. So, let me answer some questions for you....

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An Open Letter to an Entity Unlikely to Respond

October 9, 2012

Dear Portuguese, You haunt my dreams at night. I wake up in cold sweats wondering how I’ll begin to decode you. You’re like Spanish’s drunk sister, or Italian’s less rhythmic mother, or French’s brother who caught a cold. You make me feel like I’ve got 27 marbles in my mouth, while chewing gum, as I...

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A Bridge Within A Gap

September 17, 2012

Initially there were eight of us without visas—The Brazil L8—we called ourselves with internal smirks. We spent three days in Tahoe. Floated the Truckee river, swam in the ice melt lake, and stayed in a cozy cabin a five minute walk from a private beach. Even with the outstanding scenery I couldn’t always stay focused...

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Be Patient

July 16, 2012

When I got back to Austin, Texas after living with an enormous host family (16 people!) in The Dominican Republic for 8 weeks, I realized I needed to make some changes in my life. “Don’t rush, don’t rush,” my host sister would whisper in my ear, “Be patient… It will happen when it happens.” These...

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