The Boy From Brazil !!!

Posted: January 9, 2013 in CouchSurfing, Travel

My next experience, my next story is about this boy who comes from the land of beautiful  women. Yes, you guessed it right. Its Brazil. He looks so Italian, but still is so Brazilian. Actually, his roots do come from Italy. Obviously, he loves his football as much as I do. He was in India for voluntary work, helping out unprivileged children in New Delhi. How awesome is that. Then came the time to explore this gigantic country of multiple cultures and religions. One thing everyone should know about India is every state is very unique in its own way and has its own state language. India has 23 official languages and around 16,000 unofficial languages. Yes, that’s insanely crazy. Every Indian on an average speaks around 4-5 languages.  This Brazilian boy initially felt kind of lost in the country, initially every western traveler feels that. Well, here comes my part to make them feel at home.

Ederli Ricardo Covolan Picinatto is his name. I called him Ricardo. When you first look at him, he is this muscular macho guy who can take you down in one punch. To my surprise, there was such a fun loving child inside him, who loves to have a good time. He loves dancing and he loves drinking. I have never ever seen a guy who laughs so much. His laugh is so contagious that it creates a zone of happiness around you. He is the first Brazilian and South American I had met. How could I control my curiosity of not knowing almost everything about Brazil. He comes from this small town of Catanduvas from the state of Santa Catarina. He told me so much about Brazilian culture. How much of an important role football plays in the lives of kids in Brazil. They love their carnival and samba !!!

Now came the time to make him feel at home. Bring out the beers. We went out, got some beers and the crazy conversations began. My goodness, this guy is a nuclear bomb of humor, energy and enthusiasm. Beer, a guy like Ricardo around, is all you need to have an eventful evening. I took him to TOIT, this is one of the most happening places in Bangalore. We met few other friends there. It was totally a fun evening. Now, this is the part I hate the most. The time to bid adieu. I had no idea, when was I going to see this amazing person again, will I or will I not. I always make these promises to myself, that I’m going to put in all my efforts to meet all these amazing people again, who truly left their mark on my life. In the end its only memories and relationships that we will take to our grave, nothing else. Yes, I’m going to Brazil. I don’t know when, but I’m going. To meet Ricardo and his beautiful country. To meet his people and embrace his country’s beautiful culture. Unfortunately, we couldn’t click a picture together as we were so busy talking. Now I really need to go to Brazil to get our picture clicked :)

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All the people who know me and know me well. They surely know that Football is my religion, my love, my confidante and my life. One country that loves its beer and football is Germany. It’s the home country for European club giants like Bayern Munich and Borrusia Dortmund. My next story is related to a person from the beautiful city of Bonn. Yes, he is a German and I could not wait to start my footballing conversations with him. He was traveling from North India, embarking the ancient culture of this mystic land. He traveled all the way from Delhi to Jaipur, moving on to Goa and Cochin. Then came the day, where he was about to reach my backyard, my home (Bangalore). I was better prepared this time, having learnt much from my Swedish experience. We connected via Facebook before he came to India.

 On a cold morning, my most awaited guest arrives. He is somewhere close to my place, I go pick him up and we get back home. I was connected with him all throughout his travel in India. So we hit it off the moment we started conversing. We spoke for a good 30 minutes and I couldn’t wait to divert the topic to Football and ask him, which was his favorite club. Surprisingly, there was a great American twist in the tale. He is a Baseball player and just loves Baseball. He likes watching American football and even follows Basketball. Now, where was football, European football. I was repeatedly asking myself, from when did people started playing Baseball in Germany, but to my surprise they do. They do play a lot of Baseball and even have their domestic league. I would have never got to know that if I hadn’t met, the one and only Simon Reh. He is one of the nicest guys I have ever met, No No let me rephrase. He is the nicest guy I have ever met. The way he puts himself across to others is just perfect. A true gentleman, indeed. I have always taken a lot of interest in knowing about German culture, and Simon opened new avenues of information that an Indian history book couldn’t provide. Simon had adapted so well to the Indian culture. His keen interest in knowing more about Hinduism had left me astonished. This guy surely did his homework well in Germany. He had experienced sleeping beside buffalos, taking a dump on traditional Indian toilets, getting cheated by the Tuk-Tuk drivers, experiencing a rainy Goa. Yes, he had experienced it all. He was living the statement “Unity in Diversity”, which is one of the up-most held virtues of Indian culture.

 I felt obligated to make his Indian traveling experience, the most memorable one. I knew he had seen the cultural side of India, however there is a modern side to this country as well. We went to one of the most classiest party in town along with few friends. Simon, was surprised to see this side of India. A lot of moolah was splashed out that night, Jagershots were downed and we felt nothing but alcohol running down our bloodstream. This was the Indo-German collaboration to raise havoc that night and I swear on God, we did. Simon, was amazed to meet a lot of Germans, French and Englishmen at the party. This was just the beginning, we stormed two different house parties and more alcohol was consumed. The mutual understanding we shared, I have not been able to share that with people I have known for years and years. I guess,  few people are just meant to bond, just like a Covalent Bond. For the 5 days he stayed at my place, he was my German Wikipedia. How could two young guys not discuss about girls. Yes, we literally did our PHD on women, to be specific Indian and German women. Unfortunately, we never reached a conclusion. We were living our lives to the fullest.

 Now came the time to bid adieu. I could not show it on my face, but I really didn’t want this new friend of mine to leave. I wanted him to stay here for few more days, we could do so much more. I could have shown him so much more this incredible country has to offer. Well, that day I made a promise to myself. I’m going to Germany next year, and the day I land there I know where to head. Simon is a great ambassador for his country. He is the face of Germany for me. I can’t wait to travel to Germany and meet all the amazing people of this amazing country. He is my German connection ;)

Wir sehen uns bald in Deutschland !!!

This is how he is in Germany

This is how he is in Germany

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Mr. 1st Base

This is how he adapted to India

This is how he adapted to India

Indo-German Connection
That’s us !!!

I have always been the person, who would die out of curiosity. Curiosity has made me into the person that I am today. Curiosity is why I’m a better person than I was ever before. My curiosity was indirectly proportional to Geography classes. I was good at Geography. I knew where was England and I knew where was Alaska. I never knew who stayed there. I never knew if they looked like me, dressed like me or did things the way I did. I was curious. It was time to find out. 

One day at work, I came across this website, this potion of enlightenment called CouchSurfing. This site gave me the power to meet and interact with people from all across the globe. I felt like Zeus, sitting somewhere on Cloud 9. This site allows you to host or meet travelers across the globe, when they come to your city. Remember these are travelers and not the usual skimpy tourists. Here culture and experiences are exchanged. 

This one boring day, a tall handsome Swedish guy is on his way to Bangalore. He is an AC Milan fan, and I am a Valencia fan. This was my chance to get Sweden home, rather than going to Sweden. I ask this Swede to come stay with me. He cordially agrees. Now, he is on his way, I’m paranoid. I’m meeting a random stranger coming from the Scandinavian region. What do I do. I have never met a Swede before. What are we going to talk, what are going to do. Questions and more questions. 

He is here, he is here. I go pick him up from a close by landmark. I get him home and there is silence for few seconds. Then we start talking, and I don’t know when we stopped. Now, we start finding some commonality. He loves JagerBombs, so do I. He loves some good chicken, so do I. He loves Spanish girls, so do I. The bond was struck, the connection was built. We partied, we conversed, we got drunk, we watched football. We felt awesome. This was the integration of Sweden and India. Over the course of next 5 days, it was a transition of a stranger to a very good friend. The Swedish culture, food, lifestyle, women, education and what not filled the empty spaces of my brain. Whoa, do I need GOOGLE to know more about Sweden, NO, rather why not get Sweden home. So this is how I got Sweden home for the first time. Now, I’m waiting for Sweden to come home again. 

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Coming next is Germany :)

Aside  —  Posted: December 6, 2012 in CouchSurfing, Travel
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