Girl From Sao Paulo

"you are crossing the tropic of capricorn".

04 January 2011

say it in english please



One of the reasons that brought me to relocate to Brazil was a desire to be near family and give our kid the opportunity to enjoy the wholesomeness and simplicity of the family farm, even if that was only on weekends or holidays. Located about 5 hours inland from the capital in the State of São Paulo plains, the farm produces sugar cane for ethanol, oranges and cattle, and it has been in the family for a few generations having produced coffee, dairy and a few other products throughout it's history. When we lived in NY, we counted the days in anxious expectation to get there, and have since brought back a number of friends who describe this as a memorable experience. For a few years, that was where we all spent Xmas, my parents in law's 3 children would come back from the USA and gather there.
Then my brother in law moved back to Brazil, and bought an old colonial house 2 hours away from SP, which he renovated and brought back to it's original splendor, and since then we all started gathering there instead. Convenience and comfort won over the distance and time required to get to the old farm, and he's been very generous in welcoming this huge family to his home. I have not been to the old farm myself for 2 years because it is hard to get a long weekend and face a 6 hour drive each way. For brazilians this drive is not a big deal at all, and I wonder if it isn't because they are used to such expansive spaces, and how big the country's territory is. And so we've all been spending the past few holidays with our extended family at the colonial house pictured above.

Because our family is composed of a few nationalities, and all of us have lived or live in the USA, people naturally shift between english and portuguese in the course of some of our discussions. Brazilians are a boisterous lively bunch, and sooner or later, for the sake of convenience the conversations shift to portuguese. And eventually, as people get animated and expressions and laughter flare up, one of the americans will say "can you say that in english please?".
I started this blog a few years ago, with the intention to express some ideas on what it feels like to live in this incredible place. I wrote it in portuguese since then, but lately there's been so much going on about Brazil in the world that I thought it might be a good ideia to share with my northern hemisphere IN ENGLISH. Inspired by the last gathering.

Happy New Year to all.

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