Hello WP, I’ve missed you.
My absence has been one of great productivity and experience, I am relieved to say. I have finally ticked the South American box on my bucket list of continents, as I attended the opening ceremony of the Rio 2016 Olympics before travelling around the amazing country of Brazil.
I understand the controversy around the games and despite an event that has cost so much to run with such poverty on its doorstep, my visit was one that has provided me more awareness than I would have ever had at home. My first stop was São Paulo (which is insanely huge and full of character if you haven’t been) to see two friends get married. If that wasn’t a great entrance into the party culture of Brazilians, I don’t know what would have been.
I was fortunate to have had friends show me around their home city, introducing me to great people before venturing to areas as new for them as it was for me. A country the size of Europe is always going to offer new reasons to explore, even for the most keen domestic traveller.
Pre-trip I imagined a developing nation in Latin America to have religion at the forefront of culture. Having Christ the Redeemer as the postcard image for Brazil- more so with the worlds eyes on Rio this summer- preserved this perception. Despite spending a month within one social circle and visiting Belém (a city that simply translates to Bethlehem) I did not feel the weight of religion one bit. We were happy to eat, drink and dance without the ‘G’ word, and managing to keep this up for a whole month is almost unheard of in any nation.
Now, back home with a tan that seemingly washed off after my first shower, I have started writing my first book. With the content I have been able to share on WordPress and the discussions I have had throughout the years I have produced enough content to (hopefully) publish on a topic that fascinates me. Whether I add the chapters to my blog or continue to use WordPress purely to inspire further ideas I will be hitting that Publish button plenty more.