O hábito da leitura


Por mais que eu ame escrever, faz muitos anos que parei de ler livros, o máximo que consigo é ler livros com contos e crônicas. Ao longo dos anos fui perdendo o gosto de ler. Isso aconteceu depois do “boom” do Harry Potter. Na época eu não gostava muito de ler historinhas, mas minha mãe fez um trato que se eu não lesse o livro, não veria o filme e na época eu adorava seguir as modinhas do momento.

Quando era adolescente, meus livros eram sobre contos de assassinato e suspense, outros eram sobre matemática para crianças, eu adorava, não sei o que eu via de tão legal, mas era o que eu gostava. E era tudo da biblioteca da escola, então não tinha que pagar nada.

Acabei lendo o Harry Potter até o quarto livro apenas, porque minha mãe “surtou”. Eu levava o livro no banheiro e até no provador de roupas de lojas nos shoppings. Eu fingia que estava experimentando roupas e ficava lendo. Meu intuito era acabar logo pra poder ver o filme. Nem terminei esse livro, mas Harry Potter me fez perder total gosto pela leitura porque me fez pensar que eu penso errado.

Tudo que imaginei lendo, não tinha NADA a ver com o filme e, sério, uma amiga amante da leitura disse que isso é completamente normal e que, por isso tinha muita gente que ou gostava só do filme ou só do livro. Mas, de verdade, eu descobri que vivo em outro mundo. O que eu imaginei da leitura não fazia nenhum sentido com a história do filme.

De uns anos pra cá, por ter parado de ler, hoje, vejo que perdi total habilidade de foco. Não consigo ler 2 páginas e continuar o resto depois. Eu esqueço tudo e tenho que recomeçar, ou seja, faz muito tempo que não termino um livro sequer.

Ficar doente essas duas semanas, me deu oportunidade de ter tempo de ler um livro de 250 páginas em dois dias, o que foi um milagre. Agora, baixei um app chamado Goodreads e me fiz uma meta de ler ao menos 7 livros este final de ano, nem que sejam livros bobos, mas que eu termine.

É difícil eu me prender a algum livro de história fictícia, romance, etc, mas tem um específico que comprei lá pra 2013, eu acho, que se chama “Aconteceu em Paris”, da Molly Hopkins. Esse livro me prendeu de uma forma impressionante, ainda mais que comecei a ler depois de ter morado em Paris por um mês, estudando Francês. Agora, voltei a ler e, até ontem, estava me perguntando se começava do zero ou da página que eu tinha parado, uns anos atrás.

Eu, taurina, preguiçosa, queria voltar a ler do meio do livro, com algumas lembranças da história, mas resolvi começar tudo de novo e ver em quanto tempo consigo terminar um livro de mil páginas. Vou aproveitar que ainda estou em recuperação do hospital.

Não sei se vocês curtem leitura, mas esse livro é muito engraçado e conta a história de uma moça um tanto atrapalhada, desiludida do amor, e tem uma aventura bem engraçada no meio, acho que é uma comédia romântica até onde li.

Estava aqui organizando a lista de livros para ler no aplicativo e resolvi postar sobre isso como memória de que um dia eu tentei voltar ao hábito da leitura. Me desejem boa sorte!

Boa noite! (01:25am)


Continents and Countries Visited – List of 2019


This has been one of my big problems today and some time ago. When I google “countries list by continent” each website shows me a different list and perspective. Well, I already have a list of the countries I’ve stepped in, however, I never could complete the list of countries per continent as there’s loads of political issues. And, I’m not so updated with the news as I wanted. I’ve been trying my best but it’s not my favourite topic, unfortunately.

If you have read a bit of my story, you probably know that I’ve got addicted to solo travelling since 2012. Since then, I’ve been the countries below:

  1. Austria
  2. Bahamas, The
  3. Belgium
  4. Brazil
  5. Czech Republic
  6. England (UK)
  7. France
  8. Germany
  9. Ireland, Republic of
  10. Italy
  11. Netherlands, The
  12. Northern Ireland (UK)
  13. Pakistan
  14. Portugal
  15. Qatar
  16. Scotland (UK)
  17. Slovakia
  18. Spain
  19. Switzerland
  20. USA
  21. Vatican City

As you may see, I really consider UK divided in 4, while counting countries:

  1. England
  2. Northern Ireland
  3. Scotland
  4. Wales

The only weird one to count was Vatican City as it was in the middle of Rome but according to all Google research it is considered a country and who am I to argue that?

About UK, I actually just know because I lived in Northern Ireland (2014-2015) and in England from (2015-2016). It was quite confusing to me when I arrived. When I moved to Belfast, I only knew:

  • the main language was English
  • it was one of the most low-cost cities in the UK
  • the money I’d use was Sterling Pounds

Only after living in Belfast I got to know that there was a division of Ireland. The South was independent and the North was part of the UK. As I always lived in São Paulo and my teenage dream was New York, and as it was my first time in Europe, well, it blew my mind.

Travelling around teaches you good stuff but living abroad makes you really another person. I’m really someone that my “child-self” could never recognise if I’d travelled in time to the future. I’d probably recognise my face as it didn’t change much but my way of being and thinking is definitely unrecognisable.

*** Especially after the past days in which I was very ill in a UCI room at a hospital. Now I’m at home recovering and next week I’m finally back to work, can’t wait. ***

Well, I decided to post this list today as my research of the day was about the continents and countries. I’m now studying about new cultures and new places I want to visit. I want to step one time in each continent at least once and that’s why I was doing this research.

As I am recovering from the illness at home I’m having spare time to think about many things. I was scared at the hospital about my health but it didn’t stop me from thinking about the new countries I want to go.

Now, I can consider that I stepped in 3 continents: America (North and South), Europe and Asia. Hopefully I’ll be stepping in Oceania and Africa as soon as I can. Antartica is way too cold, but I’ll think about it.

I’ll definitely be posting the experiences here!

Thanks for the visit!

 

 

ssss


Aos antigos leitores


Boa noite, pessoal!

Dei uma repaginada no blog como vocês devem ter percebido, certo? Hoje, pensei bem e, decidi continuar o blog em Português para quem esteve me seguindo todo esse tempo. Eu não vou traduzir para o Inglês porque requer tempo e minha inspiração para ambas línguas é bem diferente. Então, se vocês não sabem Português, desculpem.

***I’ll be not translating to Portuguese because it takes time and my inspiration in both languages is quite different and I’m sorry for that.

Maio foi o mês de muitos desastres e aprendizados. Junho tem sido também uma lição, bem pesada por sinal.

Maio foi o mês em que eu completei 29 anos. Planejei minha comemoração de aniversário com muita antecedência com colegas de trabalho e alguns amigos em um lugar que conheci por acaso, graças a um pessoal muito legal que conheci nos últimos anos. O planejamento levou quase um mês e era para ter sido um dia somente com boas memórias, mas infelizmente, uma pessoa teve a pachorra de estragar o dia e, sinceramente, ainda não digeri a situação, mas vida que segue. Este evento me mostrou boa atriz por seguir até o final da festa com classe e derrubou mil máscaras da tal pessoa, foi realmente impressionante. Agora, sinto que perdi dinheiro e tempo por conta de um ser, mas ao menos, quebrei a cara antes dos 30.

Do final de Maio pra cá, só desgraça. Duas semanas longe do trabalho por ter pego Influenza mesmo depois de ter tomado a vacina. Uma semana trabalhando caindo aos pedaços. Um sábado quase desmaiando no trabalho e logo em seguida fui parar na UTI do hospital com Meningite Viral. Olha que mês fantástico!

Eu saí ontem da internação do hospital e estou de repouso em casa, sem poder trabalhar ainda por conta do tratamento e pelo fato de eu ter perdido a força das pernas e não conseguir andar de tanta dor por uma semana. Cheguei a andar até de bengala e ser carregada de cadeira de rodas. Estou voltando a andar, mas ainda pareço um bebê andando sem equilíbrio. Estou tomando banho sentada numa cadeira de plástico por risco de queda há mais de uma semana. Estou a ponto de surtar.

Hoje, consegui colocar as planilhas em ordem no computador, finalmente. E, estou impressionada com tudo que aconteceu nas últimas semanas em que estive doente. Estava tão entediada no quarto de internação que li muita coisa sobre investimento e, lá do quarto, comecei a investir meu dinheiro em Tesouro Direto, Renda Fixa e Ações. Entrei no hospital e saí investidora. Agora estou feliz por ter ganho cerca de 2 reais depois de 5 dias fazendo nada na cama do hospital.

Ficar doente na verdade, me permitiu enxergar e fazer coisas que deixei de fazer e me tornou outra pessoa. Além de investidora, consegui ler um livro em 2 dias. Faz sei lá quantos anos que não leio UM LIVRO. Estou tão orgulhosa de mim! Sério!

Mas agora falando sobre a doença, eu estou ainda aflita porque fizeram aquele exame “mara” de tirar o liquor da medula e estão fazendo uma nova análise sobre ele. Foi a primeira vez na vida que fui parar na UTI de um hospital. Eu achei que ia morrer, principalmente depois de passar 2 vezes em um outro hospital e ninguém entender o por quê de eu ter parado de andar do nada. Graças a uma amiga, troquei de hospital no final e agora estão me dando a devida atenção.

Sobre o exame do liquor: estou traumatizada para sempre.

Estou com medo. No fundo, estou positiva, afinal, recebi alta, mas estou com medo do que vai dar nesta segunda análise do liquor. Só espero que não peçam outra extração, porque eu fiquei tão traumatizada que comecei a chorar antes de o médico dizer que ia analizar o mesmo líquido que tirou antes. E, o trauma não é por conta da dor, mas da posição que tive que ficar e da agonia da agulha fincada na minha coluna.

Bom, hoje fui num lugar religioso e o moço disse que essa situação tinha que acontecer, é tudo lição. E eu acredito, sabe? Mas, que foi tenso, foi!

Hoje, resolvi postar porque estou a ponto de explodir. Não fiz muita coisa, mas houveram muitas tensões nessas últimas 14 horas.

Sabe uma coisa estranha que aconteceu? Fiquei internada e não tive vontade alguma de ver filmes ou de ouvir música, coisa que eu gosto muito. Estou até enjoada de rede social de tanto que fiquei mexendo lá. Pra vocês terem uma ideia, o app mais usado de hoje foi a calculadora, ou seja, finanças ajeitadas.

E, sei lá. Estou me sentindo outra pessoa. É muito dramático dizer que passei perto da morte, mas dizem que, quando a gente passa por esses momentos, a gente muda. E, eu sinto que mudei muito.

Acho que 2019 já me ensinou muita coisa, espero que daqui pra frente melhore e seja menos dramático e com menos visitas a hospitais. Torçam por mim, por favor!

 

 


Learning Languages is Essential


The first place I’ve been by myself dealing with everything in another language was Florida, USA, in 2012. Even though I’ve learned English since I was 9 years old, my knowledge was built through theory, music, movies and I’ve never practiced the speaking out of a classroom, which is not the same at all. By the way, I experienced studying in two English language schools at the same time: CCAA (American English) and Cultura Inglesa (British English), so my English is very mixed when I speak it.

The day I arrived I actually didn’t have many problems because the host mom was from Uruguay and she spoke a bit of Portuguese and Spanish and the host dad was American and very patient with my insecurity of speaking the language. But I can tell I was very lucky this time because I went through some hard situations in other countries.

At my school, there were students from South America, Europe, Middle East and some from Asia. Meeting people from many countries makes us end up knowing better about their languages, customs and cultures. As I’ve already studied a bit of Spanish before, I got along with South American students quite easily but I took some time to interact with people who spoke other languages.

In general, I’m a very sociable person and became friends with everyone but I started to feel that I needed to learn more languages in order to open my network and reach other people. The students from Germany, for example, they were very nice but a bit hard to interact with sometimes and so, it induced me to learn other languages than Portuguese and English. So, I decided to make myself a list of languages to learn so that I could feel more secure and get more connection while talking to people from other countries. On my list there was German, Italian, French, Korean and Russian.

When I came back to São Paulo, the first idea was to improve my Spanish, however, after some time I decided to try another language, so I chose French. Firstly, I bought some books and learned how to self-study. After some months, I did a one month intensive course at Alliance Française to check if I learnt it correctly. January of 2013, I took a one month course in Paris to practice the language and I came back on an intermediate level after many situations I’ve been through there. – I will tell you in another post. Nowadays, I’m not fluent but I can survive in French speaking countries, which makes me a lot more secure about solo travelling.

2014, I chose Italian. Again, I studied by myself and took a one month intensive course at CCBI with an Italian teacher from Rome. As he was native and I ran out of money, I didn’t go to Italy to practice but in one month I was almost an intermediate student. Then, I found in me an ease in learning languages. Nowadays, I can read and understand Italian but as I didn’t  practice speaking  I forgot many words. I still can understand what people talk and I’m able to survive in Italy in case I need it, so it’s fine.

On October 2014, I moved to Belfast in Northern Ireland, for my Graduate Diploma in Management. I selected the city randomly before I decided to leave Brazil for a year. I just needed a low cost living city in the UK and the studies had to be in English.

I grew up studying and listening to American and British English, however, that was the first time I was dealing with a third English accent and it was a bit scary. The first day, I took a taxi from the airport to my accommodation and I didn’t understand almost a single word the driver was saying. If he laughed, I laughed, that was the conversation until we arrive. Now it can be funny but at that time I was freaking out thinking about how would I understand the university classes and lectures. Luckily, the teachers had a mix of British-Irish accent, so I could understand mostly of the things.

I lived in a student’s village and, despite I had my own room and toilet, I had to share a kitchen with 11 people more. Half of my floor mates were northern Irish and the others were from Pakistan, Myanmar, Russia and Georgia, as I remember. The international students usually communicated with each other in English, but when I was by myself in the kitchen with the local students I found very hard to understand the whole conversation. So, in my whole stay, most of all my friends were internationals. Later, I moved to an apartment and lived with a girl from China that was very nice but I almost didn’t see her at home, we had different routines.

2015 arrived and this time I chose Korean language. I’ve already studied a bit in 2010 by myself and with friends, so I knew the alphabet and understood some expressions especially because at that time I was addicted to Korean drama and music, so it was easier.

At Queen’s University of Belfast, where I was studying, they were offering low-priced course of languages for international students and I did not hesitate to apply. However, it was hard to cope with all the studies from the university and the Korean course because there were loads of assignments to deliver.

So, now I can’t speak but I still can read despite I forgot most of the words meanings. I believe that if someday I go to Korea I will at least know how to read addresses or food names. And, in some cases, because of the Korean dramas I still can understand the topic of people’s conversations when I hear someone speaking. This is not a language that I define as being part of my knowledge, but the little I know makes me feel secure when I talk with who speak it.

By the end of 2015, I moved to Sheffield, England, for a BsC Degree in International Business with Spanish at Sheffield Hallam University. As the name of the course says, the classes and lectures were in English and Spanish. So, I went back to improve my Spanish.

However, I got addicted to learning languages and Duolingo, Memrise and Babbel apps were my hobbies all the time. I even paid Babbel and Memrise for many months to learn a bit of German and Russian. Memrise is the best one and I recommend! In the end, I didn’t get fluent in any of both languages but now I know that those languages are not that hard as people say.

Mid of 2016 I moved to Vera, Almería, in Spain for an internship. There, I went through many situations in which I had to speak Spanish, French and English in the same conversation. And I think I wouldn’t survive if I didn’t have this language baggage with me.

End of the year I came back to São Paulo and I stopped learning languages for a while. I was focusing my studies in other areas and that was a hard time for me trying to find a job. Nevertheless, my international friends were and still are in touch, so I still get to practice English, Spanish and French, at least. Until I found a fixed job, I didn’t leave São Paulo.

At the end of 2017, one of my best friends from Pakistan, that I met in Belfast, in 2014, said he was planning to get married, so me and some close friends planned this reunion for more than a year. I didn’t know If I would be able to go because at that time money was a big issue and I wasn’t earning much in my part-time job at that moment, but we kept the dream anyway.

End of December 2018, I received an email saying that I got hired! That was the best New Year celebration and also the best start of a brand new year! Although I still couldn’t confirm my presence at his wedding at that time we kept planning. Mid of the year he defined the dates and it was a 4 days marriage in Pakistan. It was an important day for my friend and also, an unique invitation of lifetime. No one is ever invited for a muslim wedding in Pakistan so easily. I couldn’t miss it. It would be an event so rich of culture and I would be seeing my friends after 4 years!

I didn’t know it was really happening but just in case, I reserved my work holidays to February 2019, on September. I actually wasn’t good managing my finances yet but by November I bought the flight tickets in 10 instalments at a trustworthy travel agency. (Solfesta Turismo)

Mid of February 2019 I took the flight to my new adventure. In Pakistan, most of the time I was with my friends and people who spoke English, but in establishments it was ok to survive with English even though not every one speaks it. I ended up extending my travel to London, Sheffield, Amsterdam and Doha, in Qatar.

In London and Sheffield, I met some old friends, in Amsterdam, I explored around for 2 days and Doha was my 5 days of holidays by myself in a very nice hotel. I came back to São Paulo on the beginning of March. Now, I’m back to São Paulo, trying to pay all the trip with loans and the credit card. Shame on me. But it was a great lesson. Now, I know better how to plan the finances better. Every time I travel is a new lesson of life.

I didn’t tell in this post all the countries I’ve been but learning languages is very essential if you want to feel safe travelling, especially English. In Belgium, for example, it was very useful to speak French when I lost my friend while we were drunk around the city centre. Shame on us. Other places I’ve been and made me continue enjoying languages were Czech Republic, Slovakia, Austria and Germany. After visiting those countries I felt like going back to my German and Russian studies after all the situations I’ve been through there, but for hobby at the moment.

Now, I’m back to improving my Spanish, but this time I want to end up considering myself fluent like English, I still get confused with some similar words in Portuguese. My goal is to not speak “Portunhol” anymore, a mix of both languages. I intend to use Spanish more professionally from now on.

So, in this post I summarised my stories for you to understand why learning languages is essential. It won’t only help you on travels or at work, it’s definitely going to open your mind and open new doors in your life for new horizons, new cultures, new connections. Travelling is just a consequence after you learn more than one language. It brings you new friends and new curiosities of customs and cultures.

A good example is that I was never a big fan of history and geography and now I constantly study the map to see where my friends come from and by consequence I end up getting knowledges about history. Challenge yourself to learn at least one more language. Three languages will always be useful and I guarantee that it’s going to be so useful that your purposes of life can even change for good.

Before I end up this post and before anyone asks, I am a descendant of Japanese born and raised in São Paulo, so my mother tongue is Brazilian Portuguese. Instead of learning Japanese, my parents preferred English as the second language like most Brazilians. So, yes, I’m Brazilian. I know how to read ‘hiragana’ and I understand some expressions in Japanese. I wouldn’t be able to survive in Japan. I tried to learn but it’s a very difficult language to learn when you are raised with latin alphabet.

Therefore, learning languages provided me 8 years of many experiences travelling and living abroad. It’s by no means been an easy journey as it may look like and it’s not every step I took that I loved. There are some hard days while you’re travelling or living by yourself abroad. I’ve laughed, I’ve cried, I was frustrated in many situations but I wouldn’t make anything different because it all changed my life and I got to know myself better in all the journey.

I’m still on the road to find myself. After living in 5 countries out of Brazil, I learned that we aren’t only one self. The truth is that can reinvent yourself in every new place you go and with each language you learn. Try it!

Hope you’ve enjoyed! – here’s to the next 10 years!