Monday, July 11, 2016
From the Heart of Our Flame
I have found my home away from home. I know that it is easier said than done after only one month here, but it has been too easy to forget my “old” life. The infamous homesickness has never come, the constant heat has not yet scorched my brow, the wonderful and dirt cheap food has not yet ached my belly, and the inability to communicate has become a wonderful and imperfectly seamless exchange of banter and information. This lifestyle is one that I can easily pick up with no self-limitations on the end date. I am a man of simplicity when it comes to necessities. Good food, intellectual stimulation, and any form of entertainment is all I really need. Here is Brazil, luxury items always have a higher price to value ratio than do items of necessity, while I cannot say the same hold true in the States. Here I can buy a large meal with rice, beans, a large portion of meat, and salad for what would be less than $3 US dollars, while in the US a meal like this would run me no less than $15. All at the same time, if I were to have bought my car here, a 2014 Dodge Charger, it would have cost about $60,000 US dollars, while I bought it in the States for less than half of that price. I say all of this to say that I believe this place to a land where my motto, “Those who live simply reign supreme”, is the most relevant. Especially living in a city like Belem, where it is not too big and busy, but it is still a big city in its own right. I can see myself living a humble life here versus the bold and vulgar one many of us Americans are accustomed to living.
Beneath these social cues, pressure, and vibrations that help shape who we are, I have, however, realized that we humans have the same ways of expressing emotion and different forms of body language. We breathe the same air, have the same basic foundations for motivation, and same need to express ourselves. Now these things may not hold true across the entire world, as I am not the world’s ambassador, but I can speak for this relationship holding fast for Brazil and many other countries. I have had the privilege of getting to know many Brazilians and go beneath the crust if superficial relationships and touch the ever-embering core of who these people are. They burn just the same as friends that I have in the States and some the same as mine. In my heart of hearts, I believe that we all come from the same place. We are all family.