Yes, this can be the beginning of our history; I said our because I am pretty sure that other exchange students will find themselves when they read it.
In June 2013,I saw on TV a program that sends students to other countries called Science Without Borders. Yes, I am Brazilian. Since that day something inside myself changed; I started to look online and see what I needed to do to get this opportunity. Some countries passed in my mind, like Australia that has English as official language and is warm. However, I felt that I need an extremely change in my life; that included the weather.
When I came to Canada, I expected to improve my English and learn a lot, but I didn't know that I was about to know myself. In March - April 2014 I received the Lakehead letter of acceptance, I organized my stuff and came. What did I know about Thunder Bay? It is cold and has a hostel, so I had one place to stay.
Arriving at the airport around 9:30 p.m. the first surprise, sun light. Indeed, 12 degree Celsius, the winter average temperature in my city. Seriously? It was SUMMER!!! Second day? I went to buy a good sweater. In the first week I make friendship so strong that I cannot believe. All thing that happen here is too extreme and deep!
Can sound weird, but I just realized that I was so far away of my hometown one month after. The first month I spent too much time learning the bus routes and the location of the groceries.
In this year I learned that we can survive below 45 negative Celsius, this is so painful! The winter sports are so cool! And funny fact, I learned a lot about my own country.
In this one year experience I can say that Canada is my second home; Seriously I love Canada, and I LOVE THUNDER BAY. A lot of times when I was in other city and people asked surprised what I was doing here. I always answered I don't what I was doing if I didn't came to Thunder Bay.
I am so glad for each day that I am here, for each person that I meet. People from at least 10 different countries, by the way.
I am not planning to move to Canada, because despite the problems, I love my country. But Canada made me find myself and my destination.