Six months ago today I boarded a flight to Brazil, rejoining my family and setting out to try creating a new future here. This came after a decade living in New Jersey, and nearly as long working in Manhattan. I left behind the dark and cold of winter for the sunshine and warmth of summer. It felt like waking up from a long sleep. I was glad to get here and I hope we can make a go of it. Still, sometimes I miss New York.
What do I miss?
First, work. Here in Brazil I’ve returned to teaching English as a foreign language, something I did earlier in life as well. I’m also taking care of a project for The Loop
, an Australia-based tech company. What I do, together with my wife’s English teaching, pays the bills minimally, but I am definitely underemployed. I’m not just talking about money either. I miss being at the heart of a vibrant tech community, working daily on innovative products while also using accumulated expertise to handle routine projects.
Second, did I mention the tech community? New York is not Silicon Valley, but there is no shortage of groups and meetups to cover virtually every methodology and technology in circulation…at least twice over. Last year I attended Agile, Lean Startup, open source, project management and software development meetups at least twice a week, every week. Here in Uberlândia these are few and far between, and I haven’t made it to one yet.
Third, the diverse culture. Every type of humanity is represented in New York City. I joked once that if you look hard enough you’ll find hobbits in the city. People from all points across the globe bring with them ideas, customs, art and food. You can find pretty much any type of cuisine you like in the city, and I for one fell in love with South Indian vegetarian cooking.
These are just a few aspects of New York that I miss. Still, I’m very happy to be where I am. Living in Brazil is something I’ve dreamed of doing almost my entire adult life, and I hope it works out this time around.