The Three Introductions, A Capstone Project.

Kara Esplin - Brazil


June 4, 2018

My capstone project was inspired by the personal bio I wrote for Global Citizen Year before program launch. Before I knew anything about brigadero, CaraKura, Ratones, Caroline & Carlos, and far before Ticen, Tisan, Tican, Titri, Tilag, and the forgotten Tirio. 

My bio reads that I enjoy good friends, the great outdoors, and amazing food. All of which are still true.

Yet when writing these blogs I dug deeper into what each of those things really meant to me, specifically in Brazil. 

During my gap year I learned to find meaning in everything. This is something my host family, supervisor, and my friends all taught me. It became a common theme throughout my gap year.

Because of this, I came to the conclusion that if there is a lesson to be learned, it should be. So I got into the habit of seeking out those lessons- and to making every moment meaningful and lasting. 

That is exactly what I did with these blogs.I pushed the boundaries of my old self, with techniques I picked up in Brazil. 

Each blog post feels dear to my heart, and fills me with joy and Saudades. Each one is written around a lighthearted, broad theme; with a deep, fulfilling twist. 

It was loads of fun looking back and reflecting on these seemingly normal things. Because it's the small, everyday things that tend to mean the most in the end. 

I had incredible experiences in Brazil. Saw Big Jesus, listened to MC Kevinho live, rafted down rivers, swam in warm ocean waters, etc. 

But the most memorable experiences will always be the incredible friendships I forged, the great views I shared with those I love and respect, and the amazing foods I cooked, and ate with those close to me. 

It's sad to say goodbye to my Brazilian experience. To Brazil, to my friends, to who I was in Brazil. But everything has a time and a place. Now it is time for a new fellow to step into the blazing Brazilian sun, and feel the warmth of the new culture, people, music, and food now surrounding them.

As for me, I begin my next journey at college. There is so much good waiting for me. So many new, amazing opportunities, and I cannot wait to move forward. 

I am thrilled for what the future holds, whatever that may be, I am ready. 

Though I am moving forward in life, Brazil will always be with me. Each time I close my eyes and tilt my head toward the sky, and let the sun warm my face. 

Thank you for letting me share bits and pieces of my gap year with you. Catch you on the flip side.

Kara Esplin