It’s been three months since we left D.C. for an extended period of traveling slow in Brazil. Three months is plenty of time to turn what once seemed like a crazy decision into the norm. Slowly but surely, we’ve grown accustomed to the Brazilian lifestyle. And though we’re far from experts, we feel a lot less overwhelmed than we did when arrived here in March with no idea what we were doing.
Living in a foreign country has reminded me a bit of being in grade school. Everything is so new and exciting and you learn something new and useful every day. I have so many ah-ha moments, from simply figuring out how to make the shower produce hot water (after nearly three months, doh!) to crafting a sentence in portuguese that may not be perfect but is actually understood by a Brazilian.
Also like a grade schooler, I’m constantly reminded of how much I don’t know and of how much fun it is to learn and explore new things. It’s a humbling feeling that I hope I can bring with me when I go back home.
Speaking of which, I can’t believe we’ll be returning to the states in less than two months! While I’m a little disappointed about the places we won’t have time to visit (like Northern Brazil and Iguazu Falls, which unfortunately just didn’t pan out) I’m amazed by everything we’ve been able to see so far.
Traveling Slow in Brazil
Our very first adventure here was a private, guided hike to a gorgeous waterfall in Brotas.
We had an incredible meal and explored Parque Ibirapuera during a short weekend trip to Sao Paulo.
Next up, four fantastic days tasting all of the wines in Bento Goncalves in Rio Grande do Sul – Brazil’s wine country.
Our favorite trip so far was probably a long weekend in Paraty, a little piece of paradise in Rio de Janeiro state.
And because this is true slow travel, we’ve had a lot of downtime to explore the non-touristy and less Instagrammable (surely that’s a word by now?) parts of Brazil. We’ve enjoyed tasting all that Brazilian cuisine has to offer. Food is always one of my favorite past times, but the favorable exchange rate makes it especially easy here to taste everything I want without breaking the bank, all while contributing to the local economy.
And I still love stumbling upon incredible street art all over the place.
Our time here hasn’t always been easy. Three months of cold to lukewarm showers will start to take its toll on a not so rugged individual. Our mattress is terrible and my work space incredibly uncomfortable, resulting in some back discomfort. The language barrier is still very much a barrier. And I miss family and friends like crazy. And brunch. I really miss brunch. And my dust buster. And a fully equipped kitchen. And… you get the point.
But all of that is like having a pebble in your Louboutins. The annoyance is nothing compared to the joy and insight that this experience has provided. (Also, I have no Louboutins, but hopefully the analogy still works.)
And the fun isn’t over yet! We have a lot of fun planned for the short time we have left in this beautiful country. We’ll spend another weekend in Sao Paulo, take a road trip to Rio de Janeiro and enjoy a week in Argentina! Stay tuned!