Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Wherever I may roam

This is what I have to say after visiting my home town after nearly 8 years living abroad and after I traveled more than 30 countries. It's not a direct attack to Salvador, nor Brazil. It could be any city or town which is no longer good to live according to one's view. This post portraits Brazil negatively though.
I can now see places from a more skeptic/critic point of view to analyse pros and cons when choosing a place to live which fulfills my desired/demanded standards. The only way to be able to do it is by traveling a lot! Places can change and one's satisfaction to live in a given city or country may also change. Sometimes very quickly.

Brazil is suffering with large-scale corruption, violence, high taxes and poor services and low economic growth despite its potential. People protested in the streets during the 2014 FIFA World Cup for better hospitals, schools and so forth while the government was spending billions building/restoring football stadiums to host the world's biggest football event with tax payers' money. FIFA demanded 8 stadiums for the host country to prepare, but the corrupt government built 12 (initially they were trying to prepare 17 of them!) and the expenditure was twice as much as foreseen for some of the stadiums (Well, if this blog would be a news website, I would have to provide links to the sources containing these figures but this is just my blog, so believe if you want).

Even after dozens of corruption scandals the same president managed to get re-elected after offering an increase in the social welfare monthly subsidy to poor families. What the big flock of voters didn't notice was that the increase was lower than the inflation since the subsidy was established. People actually got deceived. The government did it to basically 'buy' votes.
In the funny Brazilian democracy, voting is mandatory. So, the government brainwashes its poorly educated people via TV to collect their votes. Perhaps, if voting wouldn't be mandatory and only people more interested in politics give out their votes, the results would probably be much better.

During this 2-week visit to Salvador (North-east of Brazil), I noticed how its overall situation deteriorated: High inflation is back, traffic jams are heavier, the average temperature has increased by 2-3 degrees Celsius in the last 8 years according to my own estimates, making it terrible to handle even in winter. Global warming exists.

The best thing of not being a TREE is that I can go somewhere else.

Perhaps, I have passed the point of no return in my travel to Europe which initially was supposed to be temporary. Poland is my new reference country even though I live currently in Sweden. Most of my personal values can now be more easily matched with an European individual then with a Brazilian. My Brazilian roots and creation helped me a lot to deal with a "new and hostile" environment, which is how one sees the new place of living before getting fully adapted to reach a new comfort zone eventually.

Some people prefer to fight for changes, some people flee whilst some people just accept their place of living the way it is. I fled away. Was it a coward move? Maybe. But I prefer to see it as a pragmatic move. Brazil may become a good place to live someday. I admire those doing the Panelaço protests fighting for a better Brazil as well as I admire those fighting for a better Poland or for a better Sweden but in my case, the road has become my bride and she keeps me satisfied because she gives me all I need, wherever I may roam.