Goodbyes are always difficult but I did not expect leaving my host family and saying goodbye to São Paulo to be so hard. Tuesday night of our third and final week in Brazil carried in these farewells which made leaving Wednesday morning even more difficult.

At the beginning of the trip, I did not expect to become so close to my host family. However, after spending two and a half weeks in their house and accompanying them on shopping trips, walks in the park, and jam sessions that consisted of High School Musical and worship songs like “A Boa Parte”, I felt as though I had found a home in Brazil. Flauber and Alexandra opened up their home to me and Lauryn welcoming us with open arms. I always looked forward to the end of the day when we got back to their house after our hour and thirty minute car ride through the city of São Paulo and we all sat around the dinner table, ate amazing food, and laughed about the events of our day or the antics of the cats Crystal and Mary. Even though there was a language barrier between our parties, we were able to connect on a personal level breaking the boundaries that the language difference sought to maintain. While exploring the beautiful sights of Iguazu Falls will be a joyous and epic adventure, getting to know my host family has been my favorite part of my Brazil experience.

I will greatly miss Flauber’s “Bom dia meninas” every morning, singing along to Olivia Rodrigo with Sarah, hearing Nathan sass his aunt, Aline, and having cake and coffee with Alexandra on Saturday and Sunday afternoons. Their kindness, joy, and generosity showed me that you do not need to know people for a long time to become a family.


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