Saturday, March 26, 2011

In other less organized and less concept-heavy news…

While I’m doing this bizarre living in Brazil thing, life at home apparently still goes on. I hear it’s been rainy and cold, which makes me incredibly jealous. As a side note, I’ve noticed that I feel sort of happy inside whenever I hear my family say they are cold. I think it’s some kind of mental retaliation against the equatorial heat. I hope it doesn’t get too flood-y at home, though. California, please do not sink while I am gone!

I’m registering for classes at Oxy on Tuesday, which is always an absolute party. I’m looking forward to the probability that I will need to email all of the professors of the classes I want to take, begging entry – except for comps, of course! The joy. Along with that, I’ll hopefully be taking Gender and Society, Social and Cultural of the Middle East, and one other non-sociology, non-history class that is yet to be determined. Right now I’m leaning pretty heavily towards a religious studies class about Judaism, but we’ll see what happens.

I talked to some real live Brazilians my own age last week! Actually, I talked to a few people my age at my cousin’s birthday party last weekend, but when they found out I wasn’t such a fan of Twilight, or Crepusca, as it’s known here, and that I liked Harry Potter I think they decided I was too much of a dork to bother with. Even the fact that I really love Beyoncé was not enough to counter it. Oh well, at least I was being honest.

But this was super cool. A few of us from SIT were hanging out downstairs at IBEU, and Valkyria (I have no idea how this is actually spelled, but this is how it sounded, and she asked us to call her Val anyway) and João (who preferred to be known by his last name, which I have now forgotten) came right up and started talking to us. They’re both in their first semester of English at IBEU. Offering English classes seems to be IBEU’s primary function, and people sometimes get confused when I say I study at IBEU and I’m obviously learning Portuguese, not English. João goes to one of the universities here, and Val is taking the exam for public university for the third time. Apparently the SAT is nothing compared to this test – the public universities are free, which makes them incredibly competitive, which apparently means that they end up being of far better quality than the private universities. Anyway, I think I should start hanging out downstairs more often.

Next weekend we’re off to Aracati, which is an apparently smallish city to the southeast of Fortaleza. On the map it looks like it’s close to the coast, but is actually a little bit inland, inside the mouth of the Rio Jaguaribe. I really enjoyed going outside of the dense city area with José Albano, so I’m really looking forward to this.

I didn’t think that I would find knitting inspiration in a city so close to the Equator, but I have. Friday’s challenge on Big Brother Brasil involved wearing what appeared to be hiking boots and thick, cabled socks. What I wouldn’t give for even the desire to wear thick, cabled socks right now, oh my goodness.

And finally, since I haven’t yet – photos of my host family! Here's my host sister and mom, Gracilene and Georgia.

And my cousin, Julia, who loves taking pictures.

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