Monday, May 14, 2012

Arrival- Chegada

Ok, so I arrived in Brasilia this morning at 7am. I slept the whole flight after watching Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows and arrived feeling more or less human. Customs took an age and waiting for my checked bag to make an appearance on the baggage claim was torture. I knew they had lost it! But, then there it was, Hogwarts identification tag and everything. I then had to complete a small scavenger hunt, armed only with broken Portuguese phrases and a healthy Spanish reservoir for backup. I needed an ATM, a phone card to call my contacts in Goiania, and to find the bus from the airport to the bus station. Many circuits of the airport lobby later, I had found all these things, called Camilla, and was safely on Onibus 113- executivo. I miraculously made it to the bus station...

Unfortunately, I went to the wrong bus station. I followed directions and everything, but I went to the old, local-only bus station when I needed to go to the newer, regional station. So, I dragged myself onto the metro and headed to EstaƧao Shopping, hoping to god that there would be buses there. It all worked out in the end. I was just in time to catch the executive bus to Goiania at 10am (a more direct route than the normal buses), and I arrived 3 hours later. I slept most of the bus ride, thankful to finally be in the right place.

On the bus to Goiania

I met Camilla, Lara, and Bruna (my host) at the McDonald's at the station in Goiania. They're all extremely nice and speak English brilliantly. Lara had to skip off to class, so Camilla dropped Bruna and I off at her flat. She has a really nice studio apartment. It's pretty basic and small, but I think it's really charming. I have a pull out mattress that I'll sleep on later tonight and even a few drawers to call my own. I'm happy. She lives in the Universitario area of the city, which is unfortunately under some extreme construction, but it's a neat neighborhood all the same. We walked around a bit, bought some groceries, and had a coffee. I even helped her edit the English version of her resume. I think we're going to be great roommates.

Tonight we went out with a bunch of AIESEC members from Goiania to celebrate one of their birthdays. We went to probably the most authentic Brazilian place imaginable. You might not have heard of it. It's called Outback Steakhouse.

Haha! Yeah, that cheesy Australian steakhouse we all loathe for its terrible commercials and ridiculously high caloric meals. Well, it looked exactly the same as any other Outback I've experienced in the US except the menu was in Portuguese and it was crazy expensive, even in dollars. But, I had a lot of fun. I met another intern here from Holland named Anne, and we get along great. She's been here 2 weeks, and we hopefully will get a chance to explore the city together.

One half of our table

I've been told that tomorrow I'm going to get to check out my workplace. Not sure if that means I'm going to start or if it's just a shadow/introduction day. That's not until 2pm tomorrow, so I'll have some time to prepare in the morning just in case I do have to teach. In any case, the exhaustion has finally hit me, so I'm going to call it a night.

Boa noite!


  1. Glad you made it! Looking forward to some fabulous photos!

  2. So glad you made it...Outback Steakhouse experience was hilarious! Did I ever tell you about when I went to Dubai? I'd been regaled by stories of Mom's trip to Egypt and all the local food and customs (of course that was in 1954). When I landed completely jet lagged I was whisked through the dark of night and what did I see flashing by me? Lit signs for Planet Hollywood, Starbucks and McDonalds! I finally found local authentic food, but it was well hidden. Enjoy as you explore on your trip...

  3. Hi there,

    Your world traveling experience came in handy! Bless you
    for your perserverance! Love you Lauren! Stay safe!

  4. What a great start to your adventure. You are handling everything that comes your way beautifully, good job. Sounds like you're meeting some very nice people. Thanks for the stories, look forward to more. Miss you already. Love you.

  5. Gorgeous blue sky in the bus trip photo, can't wait to see more. I am glad you made it safely, that you are happy and that you are having fun. Good luck on your first day....lots of love

  6. Gotta love that Outback Steakhouse.... -_-

  7. You are such a seasoned traveler, so glad you can adapt as well as you do. Enjoy it all, and roll with the changes! Love you