While this may not be late-breaking news, I have signed a contract to leave the amazing country of Colombia and further my experience as a teacher and of Latin America in another school in another country. In July I will be moving to the city of Campinas, Brazil, for what will end up being a combination position of various life science-based courses and probably a Master's degree program.
While I still have about four months left to explore and enjoy a country that I will hold forever dear to me, allow me to share a little bit of information about my new home. Campinas (say: cahm-PEE-nahs) is located in the Brazilian state of São Paulo, about a ninety minute drive from one of the world's largest cities, São Paulo itself. While the aforementioned metropolis has about 11 million people - if the surrounding suburbs are included this number doubles - Campinas has a modest 1.5 million.
|My future campus.|
Campinas means "meadows" or "plains" in Portuguese, a new language I will have to learn. That being said, there are many coffee, cotton, and sugarcane plantations around the city, also contributing to the economy. (After living in Cali and Colombia, I am used to the burning 'cane fields and coffee has become a staple part of my diet. This will be a welcome part of the transition!)
Because this is Brazil, Campinas has not one, but two professional soccer teams, and three stadiums. I'm not sure what the plans are of yet for the World Cup in 2014, but a game or two in Campinas at the early stages may not be entirely out of the question!
The climate is pleasant year-round with a slight change in seasons, something comparable to a Midwestern spring/fall to summer. To put it simply, even the wealthy homes do not have central heating. Along with several picturesque parks and trails, there is also an extensive public transportation system, two malls, several theatres for the performing arts, and a plethora of reputable universities, ensuring that the nightlife is also on par with larger more metropolitan locales.
A lot of this information I was able to ascertain from my coincidental visit last spring for an educators' conference. One thing I learned from Wikipedia is that "Campinas was the third city in the world to adopt the technology of the telephone in 1883, after Chicago and Rio de Janeiro." Who knew?!?!
I look forward to this new change and to find out more things about Brazil and Campinas.