New Home, New Country, Same Life
We've moved again, the roaming cod. But this time we're here to stay, at least for now. One question that i've been asked over and again is why Brazil and not the US. Why choose a third world country over the center of the world. The answer is quite complicated, and for all the reasons we give, i am not even sure if we know completely. We just, do. For me, there is something of majesty in being in a country that had never before crossed my mind. dismissal, i'd say, once upon a time. But then, you never end up where you plan. Why not US. We are here for reasons of practicality, personality, and preference. Practicality covers all manners of finance. The Brazilian Real (currency) fluctuates between 1.8-1.9 to the American dollar. I still earn my living through US dollars, therefore for every one hundred i make, i earn it's double. Also cuddled into this practicality business is the fact that i am a mobile worker; where i go, my work goes with me. Unfortunately this cannot be said for my other half, ergo to work, we both are here. Furthermore, immigration and marriage in the US is more complicated and expensive than in Brasil. so. There.
In the personality field, i'm the type of nut (no offense to the other expatriates out there) that knows without doubt that i can be at home anywhere. I knew it before i moved to Europe, and knew it for certain after i moved back. This, however does not imply complete lack of fear. There is always fear hiding somewhere in everything we do. the only way to swim over it is to keep looking directly at what sits on the shore.
The last is preference. Now, i will never say that i do not love the U.S.. I am American, and obviously i will always be. I have a large family that i cherish very much. However, large is relative. When i say large, i mean about 15 people. In Brazil when you say large, you mean 100. Now, is it easier to put around 15 people on a plane, or 100. You do the math. Another note on preference is that i have actually started to fall in love with Brazil, and not just the Brazilian. About three years ago i was asked in Paris, what do you know about Brasil? my answer - uh, the capital is Brasilia. After that, there has yet passed a day where i have not learned something about Brazil.
What i find difficult about Brazil is a small list so far. But it is there, nowhere is a paradise. The heat is a bit much for my albino skin, blond hair and blue eyes, all the deodorant is liquid, most people don't have doorbells, nobody owns a clothes dryer, everyone (alright most everyone) drives like a psychopath, Kitchenaid mixers cost a fortune, electronics cost a fortune, there is an overall lack of order to everything-as an American i'm used to following right-hand rules, pedestrians don't have right-of way, and oh yeah; i don't speak Portuguese.
What i find enchanting in Brazil certainly surpasses the difficulties. The sky is always blue. Even in the city i can hear the birds. People seem happy, even the ones with little. I'm in the heat with few clothes and i come from the snow. I have my own house (haven't moved in yet, it's almost done). People ride motorcycles with flip flops. Fruit and vegetables are the least expensive items at the store. I can sleep with no cover with the window open The park is always full of runners. Flowers and bright green trees year round. Listening to Portuguese. Clothes lines. Rice and beans, every single day. Food that rarely comes in packages. Pao de queijo (cheese bread from tapioca flour). That though i cannot speak, i can smile and be understood. Tiles on and in everything. A large welcoming family. And obviously above all other things listed, i get to be with the most important person in my life, without having to get on a plane.
Now that the explanations are over, let's get on with our stories, cakes, Brazilian food and yadda. Check back soon, what is yet to come will make the Paris shenanigans seem like teacakes.
a bientot amigos