Tiffany, outbound to Brazil

Two weeks already?! How!?

The idea of living in Brazil for a year is unimaginable. Before I arrived all I could think about was Brazil Brazil Brazil. As it got closer to my departure I started thinking to myself what the heck am I doing?!?!! I realized my Portuguese was not where it should be and I was so nervous. I told myself I wouldn't cry but that only lasted about an hour. My family means more then the world to me. My brothers are my best friends and hugging them for the last time for a year kind of made my heart hurt!

Once I arrived at the airport my parents walked and waited with me at my gate. I anxiously waited and I thought I was going to puke I was so nervous. I finally boarded the plan and cried like a little baby (the guy sitting next to me was attractive and looking at me like I was crazy) once I arrived in Miami I met another exchange student from RYE Florida going to São Paulo. At 11:40 PM we went our separate ways and I boarded the plane to Belo Horizonte Brazil. I sat down and heard NOTHING BUT PORTUGUESE. It was extremely intimidating. I couldn't sleep but what seemed like years I finally landed and I had one flight left.

There was a bit confusion with my bags but my small amount of Portuguese and body language (like I was playing charades) everything was fine. As I flew into Ilheus I was shocked. Not what I expected at all. Little wooden hut houses, dirt roads, and jungle. Where were the big buildings fancy beach houses?!? I was greeted by my three host families who gave me kisses and chocolate. I was already feeling at ease. I then went to my first Brazilian BBQ anddddddd yes I ate chicken hearts. I could feel my eyes watering as I ate them trying not to gag hahaha. Things went quickly I immediately started school which was CRAZY! Very little structure so my school days consist of dancing. I can now salsa, samba, ahosa, and many more. Fortunately instead of the exchange student 15 pounds I have lost weight! I dance every day, run, go to the gym and eat healthy. I have been to a few festas (Brazilian parties) which are pretty crazy but I just dance allll night haha. Life is pretty awesome I am extremely happy. I've been jetskiing, to the beach, parties, school, Brazilian BBQs and many family events.

RANDOM BRAZILIAN THINGS:
1. What is a seatbelt? ( no one wears one)
2. If you can't dance, just leave haha
3. EVERY GUY CAN DANCE...EVERYONE
4. The kindest happiest people
5. Everyone knows English (come on America we are slacking big time)
6. Do you know Harry potter? Twilight? The Hunter games?
7. How many guns do you have?
8. BEST CHOCOLATE EVER
9. BEST FRUIT EVER
10. I find it a bit dirty here in Itabuna
11. Homeless people sleeping everywhere
12. Kiss everyone because it's rude if you don't
13. Meat meat meat and more meat

I will add more soon but something I have noticed and really admire about here in Itabuna, Brasil is even though there is a lot of corruption with the government and life is far from perfect, everyone is so happy and so giving. This is something I feel sad that many Americans don't understand. You don't need the biggest car or house so have a good time and be happy. You need to be with good people and take life one day at a time. I have already noticed a difference in myself and I am very excited for what is to come.