On beautiful days and lovely people

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Scotland has taught me to appreciate sunny days. I used to take them for granted. Actually, I never thought much of them. But here, when the sky is blue and the wind is calm, it feels like a terrible waste not to take a walk outside, specially along the beach.

Last Saturday was one of these days (in fact, I can’t really complain, because we have had quite a few of them lately). My friends who live in a nearby town came to pick me up and we spent a most wonderful afternoon walking around the beach, having tea, chatting. In the evening, I cooked for them some typical Brazilian food and they all seemed to like it – well, they are so adorable that they would never let me know if they didn’t.

It is just so funny that I’ve grown so fond of these people. We can talk and laugh for hours, but we can also sit in comfortable silence and have a cup of coffee. I feel like bit by bit they have become my family in this foreign but beloved country.

I don’t know what will happen when I return home. I do hope we can stay in touch, but this long distance friendships rarely last. I know it will not be the same for sure. So one might ask what is the point in making friends while traveling? Why invest in relationships that are doomed to fade? Doesn’t it make saying good bye harder, getting attached to people?

I say we are humans. We need to bond. Maybe having friends will make leaving more difficult, but it will certainly be worth it. All the moments I spent here, all the afternoons in the old bookshop, all the cups of coffee, all the books and poems and illustrations and rides, and that walk on the beach on a sunny Saturday, have changed me a little. And if I’m unable to carry my friends back home with me, I will most certainly carry the moments and how they shaped me.

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What I got from the journey

First, I got Edgar. Only temporarily, of course. Charlie would not like to be parted from her old backpack for long, but she was kind enough to let me borrow it for my travels during the spring break.

Then I went to Haworth, where I got lost in the Yorkshire moors trying to find the Brontë Falls and Top Withins amidst the howling winds, and the title of Emily Brontë’s only novel suddenly made perfect sense.

With mud on my boots and heather in my pocket, I went on to York, where I got outraged with the price to enter the Minster, but payed anyway (and it was worth it). I also probably got a lot fatter due to all the lovely coffee shops.

With a heavy heart I said good bye to York, only to get amazed, mesmerized, flabbergasted (really, the English language does not offer enough words) with Peterborough Cathedral, where I got to see one of my favorite authors, got my books signed, and got to meet two lovely ladies who were incredibly nice to me during my time in that town. I hope I ever get the chance to repay their kindness.

Next stop was Cambridge, where I got so much beauty captured with my eyes and registered in my mind that my camera could not possibly do it justice.

The last stop was Leeds, where the rain reminded me that I was still in Britain and made me take refuge in the Art Gallery, where I got acquainted with the work of John Atkinson Grimshaw. Also, I finally tried Jamie Oliver’s Italian restaurant and definitely will return.

Now I’m back home, getting some rest, while Edgar and I plan our next journey.