Kam Walton

Brazil

Hometown: Sanford, Florida
School: Lake Mary High School
Sponsor District : District 6980
Sponsor Club: Lake Mary, Florida
Host District: 4430
Host Club: The Rotary Club of Sao Paulo Norte

 

My Bio


Oi, Meu nome é Kameron Walton. I'm currently a sophomore at Lake Mary High and will be spending my junior year in Brazil! Being from Sanford, Florida has its ups and downs. It's a relatively small town with not much to do but its peaceful which makes up for it. I've lived in Florida half of my life and in Georgia the other half. I moved back to Florida for my freshman so I could go to high school in Florida instead of the one I was zoned for in Georgia.

Some of the things that interest me the most are skateboarding, photography, lifting weights, and swimming. At home I live with my mom, grandma, and our dog. At school I am involved with the photography club and weightlifting team. Even though I can't involve skating in school I always go to the local skate park and improve my skills there. Since I've always had a passion for traveling, when Scott came to my school and gave a presentation to the foreign language classes I couldn't wait to try and convince my mom to let me spend a year in Brazil. During my exchange I hope to become fluent in Portuguese and I hope to be so blended in with the culture that I'm able to bring customs from Brazil back with me.

 

Paulista Avenue

Paulista Avenue

Trip to Rio at the beach

Trip to Rio at the beach

In Rio de Janeiro

In Rio de Janeiro

Ibirapuera Park

Ibirapuera Park

Inbound Orientation

Inbound Orientation

Thanksgiving Dinner

Thanksgiving Dinner

In Curitiba, Brazil

In Curitiba, Brazil

In Gramado, Brazil

In Gramado, Brazil

In Foz do Iguacu, Brazil

In Foz do Iguacu, Brazil

In Curitiba, Brazil

In Curitiba, Brazil

In Foz do Iguacu, Brazil

In Foz do Iguacu, Brazil

In Florianopolis, Brazil

In Florianopolis, Brazil

Journals: Kam - Brazil 2015-2016

  • Kam, outbound to Brazil

    Eae gente! It's been a while since I wrote a journal. So much has happened in 2 months so I'll start with March in April.

    In the months of March and April,the biggest even that happened for me was that I would be going on a 13 day trip with exchange students to the cities of Foz do Iguacu, Porto Alegre, Gramado, Canela, Florianopolis, and Curtiba in the south of Brazil and also to Argentina and Paraguay. We started our trip on March 16th and headed to the city of Foz do Iguacu. In Foz do Iguacu we first visited a park of birds which contained 500 different species of birds from Brazil and also from other continents. It was really cool seeing all of the different species of birds that I have never seen before. After the Bird's park we headed towards the Foz do Iguacu waterfalls on the Brazilian side. The view of the waterfalls was really amazing. As we approached closer and closer to the waterfalls the water from the falls would hit on our clothes lightly but after about 30 minutes everyone's clothes were soaked haha.

    After Foz do Iguacu we headed to the city of Porto Alegre. In the city of Porto Alegre we took a city tour where we viewed downtown, historical landmarks, and a cathedral. It was very nice. The next cities we went to were Gramado and Canela. Arriving in these cities was one of the best parts. All around you you could see mountains, trees, and a green scenery surrounding you. In these two cities we went to a Black Lagoon in the morning which was really nice with mist, and 60 degrees weather, a car museum where we saw a bunch of antique cars from the 90's and 80's, a chocolate factory which had in my opinion the best chocolate that I've tasted in Brazil, and we went to and enormous waterfall that sat 131 meters tall.

    The last two cities that we traveled to were Florianopolis and Curitiba. In Florianopolis we visited the Fig Tree which one of the city's touristic spots, to Inglese’s Beach, and also to Armacao's Beach. At Inglese’s beach we had a really nice time. We played soccer, swam in the warm beach's waters, and played football. It was a chill day. At Armacao's Beach on the following day it started to rain as everyone started to put their bags and stuff down but that didn't stop some of us from getting in the water haha. While it was raining we jumped into the water and it was such a good feeling minus the part about the raining hitting our bodies which hurt a little kkkk. We made the best out of the day even with the rain in our way. In the last city of our trip, Curitiba, we toured a botanical garden, the 24 hour street, the Civic Center, and the Flowers Street. My favorite would've had to been the botanical garden because it was a really ni ce to see all of the beautiful flowers, plants, trees, and lake. After coming back from the trip to the south of Brazil I started to miss my family, friends, dog, and city. I began to have a lot of mixed emotions. With less than 45 days left in Brazil, I don't think it will be easy to leave this beautiful country that I now call my home. Being in Brazil has taught me a new language, how to be more responsible and independent, and things about myself that I never knew. Exchange definitely changed my life.


  • Kam, outbound to Brazil

    E aí Gente! I've delayed slot with writing journals but I have a lot to talk about so prepare yourself haha.

    In October a lot happened for me. Everyday my brother and I would walk to class together, come home to have lunch , do after school activities such as soccer, skateboarding, volleyball , and after a long day have dinner with the fam. At school I started studying Portuguese a lot more than I was since I could hardly understand what was written on tests but it became better and improved by the week. On the weekends my family and I would usually go to my uncles house for Churrascos which are Brazilian barbecues. Whenever my family and I wouldn't be going to my uncles house, I would go meet up with friends at the mall, parks, skatepark to have a session, or at museums. My weekdays and weekends are pretty packed haha.

    For Halloween in Brazil, the holiday celebrated that much. Kids don't go trick or treating door to door and you don't really consume loads of chocolate and candy. It's more chill. For my Halloween I went to two parties. I went to a party of exchange students the day before Halloween and a party of Brazilians with my brother the day of Halloween. The party of Brazilians were with people from my school and was a costume party. I couldn't decide on a costume so I dressed pretty casual. Thankfully I wasn't the only one who forgot their costume.

    For November and December I was on summer break. In Brazil the seasons are switched so summer begins in November and winter starts in June. At around the end of November is when my break started so I and the other Americans in my district decided that we would throw a thanksgiving dinner for our families. The hardest part was getting to my friends city where it was going to be held. So three other Americans and I decide that we'll take a taxi to the city since are parents couldn't. On the taxi ride there everything was fine until out taxi driver started asking for directions. Why he didn't have a gps is a question I wish I could answer. So pretty much a guy helps us and leads us to this type of neighborhood which is called a favela. A favela is a neighborhood with many shacks and houses stacked on one another. These neighborhoods are ... Let's just say sketchy. We arrive there and look for the house number and didn't find a house with it so we call t he mom of the American girl and she tells us that there are 3 other neighborhoods that have the same name of the street in the city soooooo after 45 more minutes of driving and worrying we finally make it. When we arrived we have no time to buy meat so it ended up being a vegetarian thanksgiving dinner. The gals cooked and the guys played football for the majority of the time. I made mashed potatoes and boyyyy were they good. We had a lot of pie, vegetables, macaroni and cheese, and other American delicacies. It went really well.

    For Christmas and New Years I spent my time with my family in my city. Most of Brazilians for New Years head to the beach dressed in all white and jump in the water with their clothes numerous times. At my uncles house where we stayed we swam in the pool and had a big meal with salmon, turkey , rice , beans , pies, cakes, and a lot more. I enjoyed myself a lot.

    In January I changed to my second host family that lives 10-15 minutes away. At my second family I have 2 sisters, 1 brother, a mom , a dad and a dog named Mel. During the month of January I skated a lot, went out with friends, went to the beach, and gained a pound or two kkkkkkk. A member of my sponsor club offered me the opportunity to be a part of my São Paulo's Carnaval. I took the opportunity right away and was able to participate for free. Carnaval is one the biggest holidays here. The only thing I can compare it to that we have in the USA is Mardi Gras. For Carnaval, samba schools compete against each other parading for bragging rights for a year. One mistake while performing can be very bad for your school. My school was Vila Maria. Samba schools normally start preparing 1 year before they perform to get the floats and costumes and their theme together and well put. I performed with 3 other exchange students and the rest were Brazilians. Our costumes were a sort of human fish that has diving gear on and rain boots haha. It was so hard trying to put everything on. We sambaed for over an hour and that tires me for sure but it was well worth it. Just to think that I was watching the movie too in my bio class and now 2 years later j would be performing in the Carnaval parade that was in the movie. The whole experience for me was surreal and breathtaking. I'm very grateful to have taken apart of Carnaval for 2016!

    Life here has taught me so much in such little time. I've been here for a little over 6 months now and have changed a lot in half a year. At the beginning of my exchange I knew maybe a total of 100 words and phrases combined in Portuguese. 6 months later and I'm fluent and can understand the majority if not everything. My English is getting worse by the day but I know this is good for my Portuguese. Advice to all of the future out bounds... Start learning as much of your language as you can before you arrive in your country. If you can find people to talk to who speak the language before you go then it will help you so much and you'll be way better off.

    Até mais galera ! Tchau

    To see  my homepage and some photos click HERE


  • Kam, outbound to Brazil

    E ai mano! I've been in Brazil for a litte over 2 months now and words can't describe how much I love it here. The host family that I am with right now is perfect because I have a host brother who is 15 and a host sister who is 16. My host brother and I go skateboarding a lot together. My other host brother also skates but he is on exchange to Denmark. I live near a subway station and the bus stop is right outside of where I live so trasportation is very convinient for me. For the past 2 1/2 months I have done a lot.

    In August I went on a Rotary trip during my third week to Rio de Janeiro. Around 100 other exchanges from my state in Brazil, Sao Paulo, Minas Gerais, and Rio de Janeiro met up together in Rio. We did a flash mob dance for the Rotarians since we were there for a Rotary Conference. It went well, more or less I think haha. After we performed the flash mob dance, our group from Sao Paulo went to the beach. Nobody had their swim suits with them except me who for some reason slept in swimming trunks the night before. Wearing jeans and a t shirt didn't stop everybody from getting in the water. The beach was so beautiful. While diving into the massive Rio waves you could feel the refreshing water rush upon your skin as your body submerges completly under a a wave. It was definitely one of the best feelings that I've had for sure. For the rest of August I went to a couple birthday parties, skated with my brother, made friends at the skatepark, and tried many different Brazilian foods.

    In September I did a lot of skating and exploring my city. My host uncle took my cousins, brother, and I bowling. Back in Florida I am sooo horrible at bowling but for some reason here I am actually good haha. I won 2 games and my uncle won the last one. For the rest of September I went to Avenida Paulista a lot which is similar to Times Square with other exchange students. I also had Inbound Orientation which was very nice. I was able to see all of my good friends and able to play football, soccer, volleyball, get in the pool, and play a game of pool with my friends. My Rotary district and another district which makes up ExpoBrasil went to an Expoflora event in Holambra which only happens on Fridays and Saturdays in the month of September. The event is a flower festival with German foods, rides for kids to get on, shops to buy things, and museums. It was nice and very hot which everyone had to deal with for a good 4 hours in the sun. During the festival all of the other exchange students and I represented our countries with our flag in the parade that we were in. It was a really cool event.

    Being in Brazil for a little over 2 months has humbled me a lot and has taught me a lot. My host parents speak only Portuguese which is a big help to me even though my host brother and host sister speak with me in English sometimes which I always have to tell them to only speak in Portuguese with me haha. But I love them a lot. My Portuguese has gotten a lot better since I first arrived in Brazil. I am able to talk to my parents and other people who speak only Portuguese with knowing the gist of what they're saying to me haha. I've learned that learning a foreign language studying abroad, hanging out with natives of the country, and laughing and spending time with your host family is definitely an experience of a lifetime. Thank you, Rotary, for blessing me with this once in a lifetime opportunity.

    To see my home page and some photos click HERE


  • Kam, outbound to Brazil

    E AÍ Mano!!! I am finally in Brazil and I've been here for a little over a month now. My life here is very different from my life back in Florida. I love it here.

    On the day of my departure from the Orlando International Airport, I didn't have a lot of nervousness that day. I was ready. I said my goodbyes to my family in Orlando and headed into customs. Everything went well thankfully. I boarded my flight to Atlanta in time but something tragic happened. There was a thunderstorm in Orlando at the time which delayed my flight for a hour but after the storm we finally left. The flight from Orlando to Atlanta took 1 hour and 35 minutes. I get off the plane and rush to the international gates with 20 minutes left before the plane from Atlanta to Sao Paulo takes off. I board the plane, put my earbuds in, and watch a couple of movies while on the flight. We finally arrive in Sao Paulo after 9 long hours and I am greeted by my host family with a big sign saying "Bem-Vindo Kam". I was so happy and it felt as if I was living out of a dream. We sat at a table, I tried the well known Pao de Queijo and Guarana., and then we headed on to the home.

    At the home I live with my host mom, host dad, host cousin, and host brother. We had a big breakfast and I tried many different foods. After the breakfast my host brother and I took the subway to Avenida Paulista which is a famous street in Sao Paulo. We went to a buffet with my host brother's friends and after we headed back to meet my other host brother at the skatepark. My first day here was really nice and I love it here!

    To see my home page click HERE

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