There are few things more satisfying than falling into your own bed after being away from home. And while my comfy bed is in Iowa, I also get a sense of being "home" anytime I'm in my home state of Georgia. Something about pine trees and red clay and other people who say "y'all" evokes a sense of being where I belong.
Stepping off the plane in Belo Horizonte Wednesday morning and being greeted with a warm, cheery "Bom dia!" immediately brought about a feeling of "I'm home!" that I didn't expect though. I knew I loved our time in Brasil, I knew I wanted more time here, but I was caught off guard by how at home I felt. As I've walked the familiar streets of Lourdes/Savassi, eaten at some of my favorite places, and even visited my old grocery store, I've fallen in love with this place all over again. It brings a sense of calm and peacefulness even right now as I listen to a car alarm going off, the screech of brakes at rush hour, and people whooping and hollering at a nearby buteco (small bar).
Eric and I utilized grandma babysitting services on Monday night and took the opportunity to have a dinner date before doing a little last-minute shopping for our trip. We didn't realize it, but we think the last time we ate out without Gabs was our anniversary in August (despite plenty of after bedtime stay-in dates, we should really do better with going-out date nights)! With the opportunity to talk to one another uninterrupted during the car ride and over our meal, Eric asked me what I looked forward to most about getting back to Brasil for a visit. My only answer was, "Just being there."
Then I went into analysis mode and contemplated how and why Brasil would always be so special to me/us. Starting our marriage completely dependent solely on one another. Having pretty much zero responsibility/worries (i.e. living in a rented apartment with no yard/up-keep, being financially comfortable, not having any obligations with family, friends, or organizations, etc.). Our first child being born here. Each day honestly feeling like an adventure. These are some of the reasons that I know we will always see Brasil, and specifically Belo Horizonte, as a really special place and why it is so easy to forget the many day-to-day challenges and frustrations that we faced (and that you're going to face no matter where you are.) I suppose we'll always view this place through rose-colored glasses!
But even after having all those thoughts before we got here, I didn't expect it to feel so much like going home! I think I'm going to enjoy my two weeks immensely! (Thank goodness the Policia Federal let us into the country! But more on that later . . . )