As I began writing this blog, I found myself blaming my lack of presence on varies technological difficulties I’ve been having (which is true). However, as I was typing this, I realized that that isn’t the full truth. Each time I sit down to write a blog post, I find myself giving up because I can’t seem to capture exactly what I’m trying to say. That is how Brazil feels. Each day I spend here, I find myself in moments of awe that I can’t quite explain. Life begins to rush around me as life tends to do and then all of a sudden it will stop. I’ll see the way the sunshine makes the ocean transparent sometimes, or how everyday without fail my host grandfather walks at the break of dawn to the bakery down the street to buy fresh bread for the family, or how sometimes I have an entire conversation without having to rack my brain for a Portuguese word. I don’t know exactly how to explain how these things feel, and this is the real reason why I haven’t been writing. I am overwhelmed with how much happiness and beauty I am surrounded by.
I have officially passed the halfway point of my time here, and I have a little less than 50 days left in Garopaba. I’ve spent the last few months working, learning, surfing, dancing and going to the beach of course. My family visited me at the beginning of December and I got to show them my life in Garopaba as well as explore Rio de Janiero and Ilha Grande with them. Not to any surprise, Rio and Ilha Grande were just as magical as my home in the South, only a little hotter and louder. After my family left, I welcomed in the New Year with my host family with fireworks on the beach and dancing. It Brazil it is customary to wear all white for good luck and to jump over sever waves at midnight.
I also had the opportunity to travel to Rio de Janeiro for a second time with a group of friends from Garopaba. We spent a week running around Rio in 100-degree weather soaking up as much of the city as possible. We spent time on the beach, visited Christ the Redeemer and went to all the free museums we could find.
My first Brazilian carnival didn’t disappoint and brought all the colors, glitter and dancing I could imagine.
I spent last weekend in Sao Paulo, the 7th most populated city on earth. Sao Paulo was spilling over the top with culture, good food and more people than I’ve ever seen in one place at a time.
As I go into my last month in Brazil, I am spilling over with gratitude for the time, progress, connections and learning I have had here so far, and I am full of excitement or what is to come.
I am including pictures of some of my favorite moments below.