Sunday, September 28, 2008

Citizen or alien?

"I'm an alien
I'm a legal alien
I'm a Trini in Rio de Janeiro..."

Taking the idea from Sting in the song Englishman in New York (see video), I decided to talk about my experience in a place home away from home.

I've been living in Rio for 12 long years, have a permanent visa and consider myself totally integrated in Brazilian society and the carioca way of life.

But does that make me Brazilian? Do I want to be Brazilian? Do I have to be one?

I don't think so. It's not necessary. Most people make the mistake of thinking that I'm Brazilian, probably I have mixed in so well and learnt the language.

Accordng to the Cambridge Advanced Dictionary, an alien is someone or something coming from a different country, race, or group; foreign.

But alien does not mean that I can not adapt to and accept the new.

They say that when in Rome, you should do as the Romans. More than that, I think you have to be yourself. So, the words of Sting:

BE YOURSELF NO MATTER WHAT THEY SAY

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