zaterdag 30 oktober 2010

The start of a new adventure

After a week of saying goodbye, arranging VISA papers and booking my plane ticket it was time to actually take the plane. My parents picked us up in Antwerp and my brother would meet me at the airport around 3. At the airport we spend half an hour rearranging my luggage because of weight restrictions but after this the check in went very smooth and I got my boarding passes right away.

After an emotional goodbye from my family and Romy I headed for gate 47, for the Lufthansa flight to Frankfurt. While waiting I met some people that were also going to Brasil. One of them was Igor, a three year old, very active and very cute boy. The flight went very smoothly and we arrived soon in Frankfurt. The luggage was automatically sent to the next plane so we only had to find the right gate which was no problem. However when we went for a quick bite after finding the gate we ended up passing security three times because there were no restaurants near the gate, luckily we didn't have to carry our luggage.

The flight from Frankfurt to Sao Paolo was very nice. Since it was a night flight most of the people were sleeping. Since I don't fall asleep quickly I ended up sleeping only 2 hours of the 12-hour flight. Luckily Karate Kid & Robin Hood were there to keep me company. The arrival in Sao Paulo was good but early. Since we left Frankfurt at 11pm we arrived in Sao Paula at 6 o'clock in the morning local time...

In Brussels they told me I would be able to pick up my luggage in Curitiba but Brazilian law obliges you to pick up your luggage when arriving in Brasil to get it scanned again for domestic flights. Although there was a bit of queuing to do, the luggage was well registered and I received my last boarding pass, gate 1C for flight 3357 to Curitiba, boarding at 11am! This meant waiting for about 4 and a half hours. These passed fairly quickly since I met a Brazilian that had lived in Turnhout - 25km from my home town - for two years. Another Brazilian, called Ivo Silvestre, returned home after living in the US for 12 years. After sometime we agreed to meet each other later in Curitiba and maybe go to visit his Uncle at the praia (beach)... so good plans were in the making!

The last flight to Curitiba went very smoothly, in less then one hour we were in Curitiba and I was preparing to meet AIESEC Curitiba! And what a reception... 8 people were waiting for me with posters, papers and a lot of enthousiasm, I really appreciated that after being awake for 35hours, this was a true reward!

Thank you @CT for the warm welcome!

We left by car towards Curitiba and on the way we had lunch in a Churascarria. A concept of all-in BBQ, you take your veggies and pasta or patatoes at a central table and then waiters come round with all kinds of meat: chicken, porc, coração (chicken heart), argentinian beef, ... very very good! Then we went to Felipe's place, the VP ICX of AIESEC CT. I could take a shower there, which was very nice, thank you Felipe! After a short off road trip and Jackie's excellent driving skills we made it to the praça da Espanha for some frisbee action.

Around 6 pm Jackie dropped me off at my host. Thank you for taking me around Curitiba the entire afternoon Jackie, you rock! At my host, a warm welcome awaited me. Thiago is my main contact person, he speaks english and he is a former AIESECer now working for an IT firm. His dad is Afonso, he works in a resort in Sao Paulo and is only here during the weekend because of his work. Thiago's mother is Thais, she's very nice and we usually conversate using two dictionaires (I use a Dutch-Portuguese and she uses an English-Portuguese one). This often leads to funny situations... Thiago has two sisters, Leticia and Bruna. Bruna is 17 years old and she's studying in Germany for one year. Leticia is 24 years old and she's also working. We spend the afternoon talking about Brazilian & Belgian culture (and offcourse eating waffels and chocolates!) and I also started unpacking and decorating my room with flags and pictures (thank you girls!)
In the evening we went to taco's ( a mexican restaurant) and I ordered a gringa (a salad the size of a football) and Thiago ordere a caipirinha for me (awesome). In Brasil it is normal to just order one dish with 3 or 4 people and then eat from it all together. A very nice way to get to know new dishes. By the way we got home (around 11) I fell asleep in the car, being awake for more then 40 hours with a mere 2 hour sleep on the plain, quite tiring...

Thaïs & Adriana



The next day I woke up early and started up my blog. Afterwards I joined Bruno and we went for a swim. Later on we went to the AIESEC Office, there are once again plenty of pictures on facebook. I joined an AIESEC meeting of the ICX team with Bruno. Then we went to a party of an alumni of AIESEC and after picking up Thiago's fiancee we went to Crossroads, a rock bar to look at a performance. By the time we where home, I was once again starting to fall asleep, but I enjoyed the day so it was worth it.

In a few moments I'm getting ready to go to shopping mall Mueller to attend a meeting of the communications team of Priscilla, Bruno's anamorada (girlfriend). It's something else, an AIESEC meeting in a shopping mall but we'll see!

So my first days were very good, I would even say basically full of awesomeness! I would like to say thanks to all the new people I've met in the past days, AIESECers, alumni, trainees, members, friends, friends of friends, my host family, ... 

Special thanks to Thiago for being such a super host, Bruno for showing me around town and involving me into AIESEC and Jackie for driving us all over town for 2 days.

I will see you again soon my blog!

vrijdag 29 oktober 2010

My first blog ever

Hi everybody!

Welcome to my blog about life in Brasil. I prefere to write it in English so my brasilian friends and trainees in Antwerp and all other people that don't speak Dutch can also read about my adventures. If you prefer to read it in Dutch you can always use this link: Although it's not always as accurate...

I hope you will enjoy my stories about Brasil. If you want to come by for a visit, you're always welcome!

So... see you soon in Brasil!