Thoughts on Rio

Bidding this time was totally different!  We’re super-super-super excited about going to Rio next and then it dawns on us “that’s TWO years from now!”  When we had 2 months to get ready for our move to Manila, 2 years seems like a lifetime!  We got the news as a couple, and by the time we get there, we’ll likely even have kids (our diving trip next month is our “cannot get pregnant before then” deadline after all!).

As of now, if the timing goes according to what we bid on, we’ll be staying in Manila an extra month (yay!), leaving in May 2013, going back to the US, where after taking home leave, we’ll be settling in DC until December while Karl learns how to speak Portuguese (!!!).

During that time, I can hopefully train for the Marine Corps Marathon, since we’ll definitely be in DC then (now who’s with me and want to run it too?).  I’m also excited to run some of my favorite races…  Crystal City Twilighter, Rock n Roll VA Beach Half Marathon, Army Ten Miler…  YAY!!!!!!

The odd thing that happens in this lifestyle, even when you get your #1 bid?  All the other places you won’t get to experience…  Before putting our bids in, we had to research pretty much what’s available to us so we can make a decision that’s best for our family – how do you know what will be #1 or #2 (or #30)? 

So reading about posts where you get to live in a house with a yard makes you yearn for living like that again (definitely no houses in Rio, it’s all apartments).  When you read about all the cool side trips you can take in an area (proximity to two oceans?  SCORE!), makes you excited about the possibility of those trips.  And other little things like that:  what you didn’t get.  Regardless of how happy you are with what you DID get, you also mourn for the ones you didn’t, since you had to envision yourself living there before even putting it down on your list.  Sure, part of it is because we were really really happy with our final list, and not everyone can say that, but aside from Rio, there were also lots of exciting possibilities in there.

But back to Rio…  I left Rio in July 1997, when my dad was transferred to NYC for a 2 year assignment with the UN.  When the assignment was over, they moved back to Brazil, and I stayed behind, since I was still in college then.  After graduation, I got one job, then another that took me to DC, then finally the job at the IMF that I quit once we moved to Manila.  (I miss working for the IMF, I do not miss my job though!)

The thought of moving back for 2 years, after being away for almost 17 years (in 2014) is SUPER exciting (I know, I’ve been using that word a lot lately!).  I get to live close to my family again, close to my grandmother (who is 90 years old!), close to my brother, my cousins, aunts and uncles.  I will have instant friends once I land (which is what I miss the most here in Manila, close friends I can call anytime).  We will hopefully live walking distance to the beach, but even if we don’t, we will never be more than a half hour away.

I will get to spend TWO Christmases in a row with my family – as well as other holidays that I’ve missed for so long.  Karl will get to see other parts of Brazil, that so far he only heard from stories I tell him.  Heck, I’ll get to travel to other parts of Brazil, since aside from our honeymoon, I only go to Rio when I visit.  Karl will learn my language, and get to experience living in Brazil which will be amazing!

Until then, there’s another year (and a bit) here in Manila.  I know I’ll miss Manila, so I better make the most of it until then!  As much as some things here have been tough (like making friends), other things have been wonderful (like all our trips!  Massages!  Our helper!  Cheap dining!).  We both hope to come back to Asia in the future, but until we leave, we better plan even more adventures to make the most of it!

So here’s to another amazing year in Manila!  And to living in yet another place that has no real cold winters!  Woot!

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3 Comments

Filed under Foreign Service, Rio!

3 responses to “Thoughts on Rio

  1. If my recovery goes as planned, I’ll be running the 2013 MCM. Congratulations on Rio!

  2. Thanks for contacting me! I have a quick random question about Brasilia: can you drink the tap water there? Random… I know.
    That would be wonderful to work on Portuguese with you in DC! I hope to work on it some on my own, which should hopefully be a good head start– give us something to work with, at least. 🙂
    Do you know where you’ll stay in DC? We’re thinking of Oakwood Falls Church, probably. (It’s still a year away…. crazy to be thinking this far in advance!)

    • Now here is the weird part… Brazilians DON’T drink the water, but I think it’s more cultural than necessity (there’s no bacteria there if you drink it at all — it won’t get you sick, but everyone has a filter at home and drinks the tap water after going through the filter — I guess to remove excess minerals?).

      As for where we’ll stay in DC, Oakwood FC is probably the one we REALLY want to avoid. It’s isolated from everything, and after living in that area for 7 years, we prefer to stay in Arlington, where you can walk/metro to many things and are not so dependent on cars. I think we will try to go to the Crystal City one, since the running trail I like is right there, plus we know a ton of people in that area. I think FC caters to a lot of people with kids since they can run around, and they do a lot of family oriented activities, but even if we have kids by then (a strong possibility), we still prefer our old stomping grounds.

      And yes, I can help out with Portuguese! I definitely recommend you learn as much as you can, because Brazilians don’t really know English — some do, don’t get me wrong, but it’s not like going to Europe where pretty much everyone understands a little bit of English.

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