Saturday, December 21, 2013

Good morning and good night - São Sebastião

This holiday week we are staying in a six-bedroom rental house with my American parents, BH’s parents, his 94-year old grandmother, his brother and wife and infant daughter, and BH’s older kids (21 and 18) and the twins (age 7). It is a fun and funny mess of languages, customs, food and beach time.  The older kids stay up late, the younger kids get up early and the house has a nonstop revolving door of people wandering in and out at all times.

One of the customs that Brazilians have is that they say “good morning” or “bom dia” to every single person when they get up. It’s individual. While Americans do a general announcement style “good morning”, Brazilians will say good morning (and good night, by the way) to each person. This is a lovely habit.

I am not as fond of the custom of saying goodnight to every single person when leaving a party. This often takes so long that you have to start saying good night to people when you first arrive or you will simply never succeed in leaving. When I’m tired at the end of a night, the last thing I feel like doing is going up to each person and saying goodnight, kiss on the cheek, and of course, the promises to set up lunch or oops I forgot to tell you something and all of a sudden you are there for 2 hours more.  When it’s time to go, it’s time to go!

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