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February 20, 2009

Warning: Mild Grossness Ahead

In little over a week, I will begin a semester-long study abroad program in Salvador, Brazil. Salvador is Brazil's third largest city and has earned the nickname "Brazil's capital of happiness" for its street carnivals and beach-loving population. Forget the Elysian Fields, this sounds like my vision of paradise.

However, preparing for departure has been proving far from blissful. I currently have a small dose of the live yellow fever virus swimming in my system, as well as a week's worth of typhoid pills. My arm is still sore from a diphtheria vaccine. All these meds have left me with a case of nausea, alternating fevers and chills, and mild delirium. Although, it is hard to tell if the delirium is a recent development.

Aside from preparing myself against a spectrum of infections, I am also getting used to the idea of eating meat again after spending most of my college years on the tofu-bandwagon. But how could I not eat meat while living with a family who has kindly opened their home to me in a country that is the largest exporter of both beef and poultry by volume? At least, I have little fear of struggling to find local meat, as I try to insure that the meat I do consume was raised fairly. Be prepared for a Brazilian food review in the coming months! In the meantime, if you are like myself and intrigued by Brazilian culture, I have found a couple options to investigate that don't require air travel. Check out Souza's Brazilian Steakhouse, the Burlington Brazilian Jiu Jitsu School, or the annual Montreal Brazilian Film Fest. Just talking about all these Brazilian influences in our area is getting me excited to travel. Now I am just hoping I won't regret not receiving those rabies vaccines....


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