I have now had the absolute privilege of travelling to Brazil three times, with a cumulative time spent there of about a year and a half. Even though it has been years since my last adventure to this colorful, vivacious, and welcoming land; the memories and my friendships made on all three trips continue to be as cherished today as they were 20 odd years ago (no need for detailed math here I figure! ;) !).
That first trip, before I’d even turned 16, planted a seed for me: that worldly experiences benefit young people in ways that are hard to quantify or qualify, but that undoubtedly have lifelong impacts on how we view the world and its inhabitants; regardless of colour, religion, or culture. I believe that if every young person were given the opportunity to live, learn, and love in another country, our global society would be much healthier, more forgiving, and more accepting resulting in an even more wonderful world.
Tomorrow my family will welcome Joao Paulo Gil Cavalcanti to our home for the coming few months. Joao Paulo is my Brazilian nephew, by way of being grandson of the wonderful couple who hosted me for nearly all my time in Brazil, and he is now 19 (gasp, time flies!). JP will be attending an intensive English course while here, amidst having the adventure of being an international traveler, as he prepares to begin his University career.
|Photos 1 & 2: Me & JP at my farewell party in 1994|
Photo 3: JP & Vovo Teca (his Great Grandma & a woman who
showed me consistent kindness)
Life is beautiful!