Over the past five years I have been fortunate enough to travel to several countries around the world on trips related to health and community work. Luckily, I have always managed to bring along a decent camera to capture these trips, resulting in quite a collection of photographs I've acquired. Every once in a while, I'd like to share some bits of those travels with you all -- either stories of individuals I've met, foods I've ravished, or sights I think photos can never do justice. I guess it's my way of remembering how each trip fragments itself into bits of my memory, how my past melts together to teach me something of the present.
As such, there's perhaps no better way to start than with one of my favorite places -- hands down. A place seemingly bursting at its seams with vibrant passion: Brazil. One of the first lessons I learned while spending four weeks in Sao Paolo -- a growing economic, cultural, and medical hub of the nation -- was to be grateful for the creation of fruits. Not just strawberries, mangoes, peaches, and plums. I'm talking fruits I've never even heard of, never could have imagined their existence. I tried jackfruit for the first time, fruits in the shapes of stars, fruits that looked like onions yet tasted like delectable pears; I had mangoes that, for the first time in my life, I could eat as dessert after every meal, every day. I began to dream of the paintings I could make with the insanely vibrant colors of juices that oozed, dripped, and stained my hands, my teeth, my shirts, my tongue. I became a smoothie addict, an instant fruit nut and, unfortunately, now that I'm back in the States, the standard for fruit (if not the very concept of it) has inevitably been erased and set at an impeccably tasteful high.