There’s a part towards the beginning where she talks about going to Brittany to meet his parents and friends and how she’s nervous, as anyone would be, let alone the language and culture gap.
Things go well (minus one leek incident), with people partying until 4 a.m. She writes,
I was beyond tired. My brain was fuzzy from the wine and hours of simultaneous translation. Could I really do this? Could these people be my friends? Could this strange life, this language I’d mangled all evening, be mine? I saw myself at the the bottom of an enormous mountain, looking up, trying to decide if I was ready for a long, hard climb.
I know that feeling.
I’ve had that feeling.
At Gabi’s place, off of Commercial Drive, after the Brazil-Chile game. When I was initially invited, I’d tried to refuse saying, “You guys are all going to speak Portuguese e não falo português.” She insisted (to my surprise and delight) and I stayed at that party for something like 5 hours. And I remember thinking at the end of the night, “Could this be it? Are these my people? These Brazilians in Canada. What are they doing here? What am I doing here?
I don’t know.
But if we can…I think I want to do it together.”
It was, as Paulo Coelho (conveniently, another Brazilian) puts it: a magic instant.
We have to take risks.
We can only truly understand the miracle of life when we let the unexpected manifest itself.
Every day – together with the sun – God gives us a moment in which it is possible to change everything that makes us unhappy.
Every day we try to pretend that we don’t realize that moment, that it doesn’t exist, that today is just the same as yesterday and will be the same as tomorrow. But if you pay attention, you can discover the magic instant.
It may be hiding at the moment when we put the key in the door in the morning, in the silence right after dinner, in the thousand and one things that all seem the same to us. This moment exists – a moment when all the strength of the stars passes through us and lets us work miracles.
E agora, eu falo o português. 🙂
(Well, understand it at least. My accent is still somewhere between Mexican and Italian.)