Adventures in Brazil!

It is the end of the second week since I’ve been in Aracaju, Brazil and I feel I am almost (not quite) getting used to the environment and especially the weather!.. Kind of. Last time I wrote my post about my first few days in Brazil, I left off talking about the marcado that my group and I went to. Since then, we have done a lot more and we have been exploring a lot more too.

So we have been having class and talking more about disabilities in Brazil, talking specifically about technology, education and rehabilitation. We have talked to self advocates and advocates from different organizations in Brazil that talked to us about the disability laws implemented here and how much work needs to be done for equal human rights and opportunities for all. Throughout this past week we have also learned more about the CRPD (Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities) and how that compares with Brazil and the United States. It was really interesting to know which articles in the CRPD were more important in certsim aspects in Brazil than the United States and vice versa. It was also interesting to learn about the work that is being done to make sure that these articles and laws are being implemented effectively. Besides this type of classwork we have also been learning more Portuguese. It is still a lot of fun but it is still going at a fast pace. But it is expected since we are only going to be here for a couple more weeks so the teacher wants us to learn as much as we can before we leave. This week we learned about food and how to identify different parts of the house. I was so happy to learn food because I hated not knowing how to say certain foods when I would go out to eat with my group haha 🙂 so it was helpful!

Now about the more social aspects of what we have done in Brazil. We have been going to the beach and exploring the boardwalk near the beach. The boardwalk that we went to is called the Orla and it has cool restaurants, ice cream and dessert places and shops where you can buy souvenirs, dresses, hammocks, jewlery (similar to the marcado that we went to last week). I bought a blanket that had the Brazillian flag on it and it is amazing! Afterwards, we went to
the beach and the ocean is actually warm! It felt nice to go in there especially because there were waves so a couple of us went bodysurfing and it was awesome! A couple of days after we went to a dance studio to learn a dance called capoiera which is an Afro-Brazillian dance mixed with martial arts. I had such a good time but it was definitely hard especially since you have to be very flexible which I am not. We learned different moves and beats and some history of capoiera such as it originated during the slave times and it was brought from different parts of Africa to Brazil at first as a way to fight off bad people but then Brazil incorporated dance moves along with it as well which then made it capoiera. It was definitely a workout 🙂 Later on in the week, we went to the museum that is located in downtown Aracaju and it was really cool! It had artifacts about the history of Aracaju and the state of Sergipe (where Aracaju is located) as well as games that chidren can play and gift shops. It was great to explore the museum and talk to some of the tour guides that worked there (luckily some of them spoke English). Later that night we went to a battle of the bands event and saw some bands doing covers of songs by American artists such as Adele, the Foo Fighters, and the Strokes. I was surpirsed by how much the people there loved these songs; they were all jumping up and down rocking to the songs and I thought that was cool! Plus, we got to meet some people who were in the bands and got to speak to them about Brazil and we got to practice some Portuguese but most of them spoke English. It was such a fun experience especially since I’ve never been to a battle of the bands event like that before. So this week, was fun and definitely an exciting time.

I hope you all enjoyed reading this and there will be more to come!

Até logo! (See you later!)