Hi everyone! I can’t believe I’ve been back in the states for almost 6 months! Brazil was a blast but I have a lot more to say looking back on packing, planning, recovering, and cooping from such an eventful trip and I will be posting some videos and a lot more pictures in my wordpress blog:) email@example.com talking more about some of the trip and what it has been like since being back:) Thanks so much to amazing GCC for posting my links to the school website and thank you to anyone who took the time to read about my very exciting trip:)
I had to go to the doctors early. Elisete and Fatima were going to take me but first I had to spend sometime on the phone with my insurance company. Luckily, my travel insurance was very good and covered a lot. We were able to go to the family doctor and I received much better care than I would have if I had to go to a public hospital. I had to have X-rays done on my arm, and then we went to see the doctor. Apparently I didn’t break anything, but I the bike accident had caused some indirect trauma to my elbow. I had a lesion in my ligament and it was like inflamed and would need to immobilized for a few days….yes, I had to get a cast put on. If I was already feeling embarrassed about the accident and the amount of attention I was constantly getting in Brazil, the cast, that went from my fingers all the way up to my shoulder, was really just icing on the cake! I laughed like a crazy person as the nurse wrapped my arm of course this would happen to me! . As I’ve mentioned before I’m prone to verrrrrry bad luck, and after a while you just learn to laugh about it and take it in stride.
We didn’t get home until almost noon and the family had planned a bbq for me. So I had about fifteen minutes to get ready with my newly immobilized arm, and realized very quickly my clothes were not going to fix over the sexy new addition to my arm. We got to the bbq and waited for people to arrive. It was cold and rainy, and the bbq was fairly small. I should probably explain a little bit of the difference in Brazilian bbq’s compared to a typical one from the U.S. An American bbq means hotdogs and hamburgers, with one man on the grill and a whole lot of different salads. In Brazil it means giant amounts of meat, and different kinds of meat that they cook and eat, and cook and eat, and cook and eat. As a vegetarian, I ate salad and rice. I was also introduced to an American girl that was in Brazil. Jess had met her through a friend and invited her to the bbq. Her name was Crystal and she’s from Boston. We didn’t have a ton in common, but she’s a very relaxed and fun person. We talked a lot about the differences in the cultures, and it was somewhat comforting not being the only American for just one day. I spent most of the bbq talking to Crystal and Ademar (who’s a very good friend, that I talked about in earlier blogs) I was given the nickname of “Frog” by Ademar who felt it was very fitting as I stuck my tongue out at him when he would pick on me. I was his little frog the rest of my trip.
Later we had English class, after English class everyone from school was going out to a Karaoke bar. The bar was a lot of fun. Our group was very large and loud. Ademar, was my “boyfriend” for the night and kept me laughing with his silly antics. I’d made a lot of friends at school and it was fun getting to hangout longer than just in between class breaks. I don’t drink, and sobriety only works for so long after everyone else has a few drinks in them. It was fun, but I was tired, and we were suppose to be getting up at 7:00 the next morning for something Fatima had planned for us to do. We left the bar a little after 1:00. (Found out later that the rest of the group didn’t go home till 5)
I would be lying if I said I wasn’t the slightest bit nervous. I was going to travel internationally by myself to a country where I don’t speak the language, and the reality of such a venture is a little alarming at times! I flew from New York to Georgia without incident and once in Atlanta, I would catch my flight to Sao Paulo, Brazil. Atlanta is a large airport, and lugging my giant carry-on bag (with my camera and computer in it for safe keeping) around was no easy task! I had to rush a little but eventually I made it to the right gate.
While I was sitting and waiting for our plane to begin boarding I was approached by a Brazilian woman who began to rattle off Portuguese very animatedly to me. I’m sure the look on my face must have been entertaining to say the least! I smiled and nodded dumbly, as only someone who has no clue what you’re talking about can. Frustrated she turned to another woman and they began conversing, clearly she wanted more than a smile and a nod. On the plane I waited anxiously to see who would be my travel companion for the next ten hours of my life. I couldn’t help it, I was terrified I was going to be sitting next to a big gruff man who didn’t speak a lick of English; thank God I wasn’t right! A middle-aged and somewhat quirky looking lady approached and began unloading her traveling things beside me, looking up she must have noticed my gaze,
“Hello” she said in flawless English. My whole body relaxed as relief flooded in, I eager returned her smile,
“You speak English!” It wasn’t a question. She laughed, I must have looked as relieved as I felt.
Her name was Debra, and her son had come to Brazil as a student and fell in love. Now he was married with two kids and Debra often went to Brazil to visit. We chatted, and I asked her a lot of questions about Brazil. We parted ways at the airport in Sao Paulo, she had to make a connection, and I had to go through customs, find my luggage, and meet the trio that was to take me to Americana.
I wandered around a little confused in the airport for a while before pushing my cart of luggage out of the exit and looked around for a sign with my name on it. I spotted them in no time, and broke out into a grin. The sign read “Welcome Charissa Farnsworth! Bem-vinda a Fatec Americana! which translates into welcome to Fatec Americana. I welcomed their embraces, their smiling faces assuring me all my worries and fears had been in vain. Finally, I’m here!
Sorry for a bit of a delay, but the Boyds asked that we update the blog to let everybody know that they and the students have arrived in Ireland safe and sound and by the time you read this will already have partaken in rousing round of Bog Jumping!