Your Culture is our Culture

A Mix Of Two Cultures

Take a moment to take a journey to another world. Close your eyes and allow your imagination to take hold of your senses.  Picture a single two lane highway, black as coal. You have your windows down allowing a cool breeze pass through your car on a hot summers days. Let the scent of your surrounding fill your nose. Mixture of forest, farmland, pine, flowers, and that residual dew on the trees from the rain pour of the night before. You carry on driving on this single road, taking it winding course through what looks like a darkness of forest. Trees towering over, with thick branches and foliage, which you wonder to yourself how did they get through this to make a road here. The beauty of the different hues of greens, browns, yellow, and reds in the foliage mesmerize you from a distance. As you continue and think this forest is never ending a clearing up ahead appears and from both sides the view is breathtaking, hills rolling over hills of farmland and farmland, combining harmoniously to create a site that you have never witness before. As you drive down the hill you turn the bend to a bridge that grants you safe passage of an ever changing river that separates the forest from the town perched on the hill on the other side of that bridge. Not of any great size, but ever growing and evolving small town. As you enter the city you look up to the highest point of the town and see the staple monument of Chimarrao, a tall Cuia e Bomba. A little town named after a saint, Sao Mateus do Sul, but for myself, I call it one of my many homes.

For as long as I can remember, I have lived between Brazilian and American cultures. In the time that I lived in Brazil, I did travel to a few states, but primarily lived in Sao Matues do Sul, Parana. A small town for sure, but growing ever so easily. The town holds an interesting culture between, farmers, loggers, and Petro-bras factory workers. A predominantly catholic town, with two cathedral like churches sitting opposite each other on opposite sides of town. The atmosphere is primarily family based, community, and festivities. Like any other small town, everyone knows you or knows of you or knows of your family name. The vibe in Brazil is more relaxed and easy going. The people there are hard workers, but also like to take in the little moments throughout the day to sit for a moment and enjoy a good conversation with a cervejinha (typical term for a beer). In my experience with strangers in the Brazilian culture, everyone tends to be intrigued about where you are from. When they find out that you are new to town, there is no moment hesitation in inviting you out to check out a local bar with live music. Festivities are always occurring, I felt like they were continuously looking for new or different ways to bring the community together. One of the things that I found intriguing about the Brazilian people, apart from their welcoming smile, contagious laughter, and overall uplifting spirit; was the pride that they take in being Brazilian. When you ask a Brazilian, what nationality they are; the response is always Brazilian. No matter if your appearance is Asian, white, black, native Amazonian; the association is always “I am Brazilian”. The heritage of the people as one surpasses the heritage of your own personal family tree. When I look at the Brazilian people, I see a true melting pot of a nation. Yes, families are proud of their family heritage, and sit together at family gatherings talking about their great grandparents or ancestors arriving to Brazil, from Poland, Portugal, Japan, Italy, or where ever else in the world they may have descended from. It is true that they take pride in remembering their ancestors past and culture, but it is in a way that welcomes the infusion of the essence of the Brazilian culture they live in today.

Brazil is very large, no matter which region you decide to travel to it is always a unique experience. The one thing for sure is that no matter where you go, the people will be welcoming, and will love to have a good time. Just like anywhere else you go in the world, take care of yourself first and your safety. Overall, I have found Brazilians to be one of most festive, warm-hearted individuals. I always say, everyone should go experience Brazil once, and truly you won’t regret it.

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