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Life in London: Never Look Back

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Being Brazilian in England is often a big adjustment.  I come from a very loving and heritage-rich family and a culture that is equally as strong.  I have unbreakable ties to my home country and love it dearly but I adore my stay abroad as well.

My decision to leave was a difficult one but I had to follow my heart.  With the blessings of my dear Papa and my mother as well, I set sail to find what my dreams held in store for me.  I enrolled in school in London and left without looking back.

The language was a bit of a barrier. Although my first language is Portuguese, I have spoken English since I was a child but it is different actually communicating and in London, they have an English all their own.  I didn’t fanny around.  I determined to speak English in England and nothing else.  I have managed to be successful and think that I do quite well.

Brazil is a hodgepodge of cultures so I am quite used to skins of all colors and languages as well so that was not a shock.  The culture shock I experienced was that for the first time, I was the fish out of water.  The main thing I had to remember was not to panic.

I miss my family so much.  We keep in touch through phone calls and via the internet.  It is fun to Skyppe with my father who is not technically savvy at all.  But he loves and misses me so he has learned and I find that to be heartwarming.  My sisters have come to visit and that was fun.   I go back as often as I can but cannot afford to do so that often.  I have met some beautiful people here but still, I miss my family and extended family back home.

It can be scary being in a different country.  Its things like the difference in traditions and holidays that probably hit me the hardest.  There are some holidays that Brazil shares with England like Christmas and New Year’s Day.

Life goes on as usual in London when Brazil is busy celebrating Children’s Day, All Soul’s Day and Tiradentes’ Day.  That is odd to me but I just try to do something within my day that reminds me of what I would be doing if I was at home.

I miss the music of home too and the dancing too.  I love a good Samba.  Forro music is a passion of mine.  It is country music, Brazil style.  Believe it or not, I really enjoy square dancing.  Of course I put my own signature moves on it.

Brazilian food is the best in the world, in my opinion and of course, I miss that tremendously.  My mother is the best cook I have ever known so I grew up accustomed to the best Brazilian food on the dinner table every night.  Feijoada is the dish I miss the most.

I have found a few cracking Brazilian restaurants in London.  There is one in particular that I frequent because it is authentic Brazilian cosine.  I try to eat at one of the locations every few weeks so I don’t miss the home food too much.

Living in London is triumph and tribulation at the same time.  It’s a whole different life than it was in Brazil but I take with me the things and the people of Brazil in my heart and in London, I am finding room for more.

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