Arwa from Saudi Arabia interviews Julie from Brazil
Arwa: Tell me a little about your hometown?
Julie: Belem is a beautiful warm city! It is located up in the north of Brazil. As it is just under the Equator line, it is a very hot place and rains every day! We like to say: Are we going to meet before or after the rain?. It is a common joke among Brazilian people as it does rain at 5 PM everyday.
What I love about my place are the wonderful different types of food we have. All of them come from native indians, so it is basically cooked with manioc and strong local herbs. You would be surprised seeing all the varieties we can do with manioc and how tasty they are.
Arwa: What did you study before coming to Cork?
Julie: I graduated in 2007 in Naval Science in engineering area at Brazillian Marine College. Before I came to Cork I used to work as an engine room engineer what means that I’ve worked in big vessels taking care of equipment and everything that involves engineering onboard of big ships.
Arwa: If you could choose one place to visit on holiday, where would you go and why?
Julie: I would love to see Amsterdam. All my friends that have been there said wonderful things about it and they all said that the place made them rthink of me. I don’t know why (yet), I think I have to go there to see.
Arwa: What has surprised you about Cork?
Julie: Definitely the weather. But I have to say that it was a good surprise. Everyone I know in Cork is always complaining about the weather as they say that it rains a lot here. Since I arrived, we’d had really few days with bad weather and most of them were sunny and happy days.
It is too cold for those whose came from North of Brazil, but I have no complaints about it.
Arwa: What are you going to do after the English course?
Julie: I am not sure yet, but I’m looking forward to using my English skills to help me somehow not to go back doing the same thing as I’ve been doing since I graduated. Maybe I can start training to be an English teacher… Yes, this is something I would like to do in the future.
Arwa: What advice would you give someone from your country coming to live and study in Cork?
Julie: Bring plenty of coats and jackets!
The temperature difference between my place and Cork is about 25 degrees. So, this would be the main worry, as it was for myself.
Arwa: What would you advise people who plan to spend their vacation in Brazil?
Julie: Brazil is such a big country that depends on the city that the person chooses to visit. For example, my place is really warm and rains a lot, in this case I would say: Don’t worry about bringing clothes. But down in the south of Brazil it is really different and some places could be colder than Cork.
Mainly people go to Brazil to visit Rio de Janeiro, which is one of the most beautiful places in Brazil, so for them, I would say: Bring your bikini and a huge smile on your face, forget all your problems and enjoy our beautiful beaches and wonderful people.
Arwa: What is the most known traditional food in Brazil?
Julie: We have plenty traditional food. It, again, depends on the place you are going to visit. But, I would say that everywhere you are going to find our famous Feijoada which is done with black beans and all parts of the pork. It is quite a heavy dish, but even like this, it is incredibly succulent.
Arwa: What distinguishes your country most from other countries?
Julie: Everything! Nowhere do you have so many different places to visit. You can choose what kind of place or view you would like to see. In Brazil, we have everything inside one country. Which makes it really enjoyable. For example: You could have a beer on the beach on a sunny day on Rio de Janeiro or you could light up a fire to warm yourself and eat foundee whilst you watch the snow falling on Serra Gaucha. You could have some adventure discovering the Rain Forest or just sail on the second biggest river in the world. You could dive in one of the most beautiful and clear rivers in the world in Bonito or get a ride on a buggy and adventure yourself on the dunes os Northest of Brazil.
You can do whatever you want in Brazil. Doesn’t that look nice?
Arwa: Who is your role-model? Why is that?
Julie: The person I try to be at least a little bit like is my mother. She passed away when I was 13, but she was such a good soul that she made a huge difference in the place we used to live when I was a child. We didn’t have too much time together as she was always busy working at the hospital she used to run and which nowadays has her name, but it was enough to her to show me everything I needed to know to become a good person and make some difference in the world. And I do want one day, to become half of the person she was.