Sunday, August 10, 2014

A recent graduate shares her summer adventure

I just got back this weekend from two weeks of training in Chicago for my new job. I’m still living near campus because I’ll be working in Philly, and I have to say it’s a bit strange to be here and know I won’t be going back to class next month. I had about two months between graduation and work so I’ve been traveling a lot. I went to Washington DC for the first time where I saw all the monuments, museums, and the white house. Then it was back to Philly for a couple days before heading off to San Francisco. While I was there I also made some side trips to visit friends in LA and go wine tasting in Napa Valley. After that I had a weekend here and then it was off to Brazil – the trip I had been saving for all through college.

I’m Portuguese, so football, or soccer as Americans call it, is a big part of my culture. Ever since I was little, I’ve wanted to go to a world cup. It’s also been a dream of mine to go to Brazil. So when the two things happened together, the year I graduated, I knew I had to be there. Even better, Portugal was playing the US on my birthday. I entered the lottery for tickets back in January or February, and as soon as I learned I got the game tickets, I was looking for hotels, flights, and people to come with me. Luckily a couple of my friends were crazy enough to decide to come with me, so at the end of June we left for Brazil. The games we were watching were in Manaus, which is a city in the middle of the Amazon rainforest. So on top of getting to watch the world cup live, we got to explore the forest. One day we climbed a 60m tall tree and relaxed up at the top in hammocks above the forest canopy. Another day we went swimming in waterfalls, and hiked through the river and caves. The games themselves were also amazing – being in the stadium with people dressed up and supporting their teams was a great experience. Unfortunately, Portugal tied so it wasn’t the best end to my birthday, but I still had a really good time. In fact, the whole experience was so good, and easier to organize than I expected, that I’m planning on going to the next world cup. So, if anyone wants to join, I’ll see you in Russia in four years.

Patricia graduated in May with a Systems Science Engineering Degree and will be working in consulting in Philadelphia this fall.  Questions for Patricia?  contact her at

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