First Impressions

On Sunday I left the country for the first time in my life, and to be honest, I was a bit terrified. I thought Brazil would be infinitely different than the United States, and in many ways, it is. But different isn’t always bad.

(Photo by Cara Wilwerding).

The first thing I noticed after stepping out of the airport Sunday was the scent. It had just rained — as it does almost every day — and the humid air was sweet, much like the people I’ve met so far.

A man walks down Rua 13 de Maio. (Photo by Cara Wilwerding).

A man walks down Rua 13 de Maio.

We had a dinner last night with local Brazilians, who are helping us with our projects. I was surprised by how willing these people were to assist us because people in the U.S. aren’t always so helpful. Maybe it was because most of these people were journalists and they understood our difficulties, or maybe Brazilian culture had a lot more to do with it. Regardless of the reason, their kindness and assistance was much appreciated.

Brianna Soukup waits for guests to arrive to dinner at Cantina Conchetta Monday evening. (Photo by Cara Wilwerding).

Brianna Soukup waits for guests to arrive to dinner at Cantina Conchetta Monday evening.

Thiago Slash talks to Brian Lehmann during dinner at Cantina Conchetta. (Photo by Cara Wilwerding).

Thiago Slash talks to Brian Lehmann during dinner at Cantina Conchetta.

Our group talks outside of Cantina Conchetta after dinner. (Photo by Cara Wilwerding).

Our group talks outside of Cantina Conchetta after dinner.

The majority of my time here will be spent working on two different stories. First, I’m researching a music program for underprivileged children in a favela called Paraisópolis (Paradise City). This program hopes to host a 10,000 string orchestra within the next ten years. Secondly, I’m going to explore the lives of vendors at 25 de Março, an open market that gets very busy around Christmastime. Many of these vendors are impoverished and make their own food, drinks, clothing and other items to sell at low prices and support their families.

I’m excited to get started on both these projects and I hope you keep following our blog! We appreciate your support thus far.

-Cara Wilwerding

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About Cara Wilwerding
Cara Wilwerding is a senior journalism major at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She grew up in Omaha, Neb and started her journalism career at Omaha Westside High School. She writes for the Daily Nebraskan’s arts and entertainment section in addition to taking photos. She’s also traveled to São Paulo, Brazil, for a similar photojournalism project with the College of Journalism and Mass Communications. This summer, she will work as an editorial and multimedia intern for HearNebraska.org, float down the Niobrara River and play a fair amount of ultimate frisbee. After graduating next spring, Wilwerding hopes to continue writing and photographing for an arts and entertainment publication.

One Response to First Impressions

  1. Ann P. Wilwerding says:

    Cara, You think YOU were terrified……So glad you are all safe and enjoying yourselves. The pictures are beautiful, such great colors! Everything I’ve read so far is very interesting and positive. Keep up the good work! Love, Mom

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