Tonight I was planning on taking it easy after a long week by blogging about some of the important events that have been going on in the last two weeks. Instead, I sit hear late at night after an unplanned outing to a Brazilian party! I was searching for some people to sign my Australian flag as a memento of all the people I met at Richardson Hall, so I could take it with me, and I wound up finding a "Bon Voyage!" party for Clarie, our residential Frenchwoman. They had planned to go to the city, but they changed their minds, and decided to go to a Brazilian party that was a 20 minute walk from campus. I was reluctant to go, but it is so hard to say no to Brazilian enthusiasm, plus I haven't gone out in quite some time.
Brazilian parties are not like other parties. When you know someone, you don't just say hi and start talking. You spot each other from across the room, yell "HEY!" and run to give them a great big bear hug! And when you meet someone for the first time, you don't just start chatting. You start chatting but your faces have barely a hands width between each other! Or while conversing with people you already know, they frequently touch you on the back or shoulder. Its all hugging and touching, and yelling. Flamboyance is my best word to describe it. Its a pleasant difference between the unconscious bubble of space we give new people in America. We think this is respectful to give strangers space, but you feel like part of the family when you know no one this way. No one is a stranger, they are just someone new to include in the festivities.
Much of the party, I spent talking to a local Australian named Dan. He works as a musician; he plays guitar, and was a good looking guy. I probably spent at least an hour talking to him before his friends came over and I felt like a third wheel. It was nice, though to talk to someone local about music and other culture difference. I have had similar conversations before, but it is always nice to get a fresh perspective. Then, I began talking to a Brazilian. He was so tall. I couldn't get over the fact that while I was standing on a step, he was still taller than me. My neck was straining to look up. On top of this, it was sometimes difficult to chat with him because he was quite inebriated, so his breath smelt strongly of wine. I myself didn't drink anything. I knew I was going to a group meeting in the morning, plus I need to call my parents.
I think the most fun I had though, was talking to Miguel on the way their. He was so drunk that almost everything I said was funny. I told him that I thought he was so drunk that if I said "banana" to him, he would laugh. He asked me to try it.....He laughed.
He kept on thinking I was making fun of him, though. I did a little after he said that, but both times I was being quite serious. He was asking me if I knew how it seems like in every group of friends their is always one person that is like the mother figure. And I said yes, I understand what you mean (and to that friend who knows who she is, you are the reason I can say yes to this ;) ) He got really defensive, and said, "You're making fun of me, aren't you?" He did make the point that if someone else was as drunk as he was at that moment, he would be making fun of them. The next time that he had the same reaction was when I told him there was a phrase in America when you said someone was playing possum because possums in America played dead as a defense mechanism.
His laugh sounded like an animal hissing and then turned into a full blown hyena cackle. I had never heard him laugh like that. Oh, Miguel, you made the night some much more fun because of your "drunkenness."
I learned a new cultural phrase and a way of living today, too. I want to start using them! Here they are:
Brazilian Phrase: "Traveling through mayonnaise."
Translation: Day dreaming
French Saying: "You eat like a King for breakfast, a Prince for lunch, and a Prisoner for dinner."
Good night! I cannot write anymore. I already spent half an hour writing this, when I had planned to be back at 1 am, and ended up back at 2 am. Now, it's 2:30 am, and I know I have to get up. So, I am getting my tuckus to bed!