One of my favorite words in all of literature is not even in English, but rather in my native Portuguese.
That word is “saudade”, from the Latin “solitas” and “solitatis” (loneliness). The Portuguese definition roughly translates to “melancholy remembrance of a person not present, or a distant place or thing, that you wish to be able to see our possess. Nostalgia”.
Nostalgia is, in fact, the closest English word that could possibly compare to it, but it still doesn’t manage to express its true meaning. Only native Portuguese and Galician speakers can truly understand this word, there is no translation to any other languages.
Saudade is the feeling I get when I think of my beautiful, wonderful and magical hometown, Fortaleza.
Oh how I long for those lazy afternoons spent sitting on my grandma’s balcony, overlooking Avenida Beira Mar and the seemingly never-ending, majestic south Atlantic Ocean.
Sometimes, out of nowhere, I remember the little things, and the associated memories come flooding back. One of my favorites is the smell of saltwater completely engulfing me, as I sit in the sand with my cousins, listening to music, watching the sun set and having silly little talks. And oh, how I miss our little talks. And I also miss the taste of pão de queijo and brigadeiro, and the familiar smell as soon as I open the door to my grandma’s apartment, and the sound of cars whizzing past outside my window in the dead of night, and the feeling of sand underneath my toes.
No matter where I am, I will always remember where I came from, and a little hint of saudade will remain lingering in the back of my mind, together with the rest of my insane, yet genuine feelings.
All of these pictures within this post, although they are beautiful, are not mine. Unless I mentioned in the caption that they were mine (the first two), they were taken, edited and posted on Instagram by my extremely talented uncle who shares all of Fortaleza’s beauty and its pretty like secret spots with the world. You guys should totally give him a follow, and further increase your desire to visit this beautiful city that I miss so very much on another cold, rainy, windy Texas night.
But for all those that are interested in seeing what Texas has to offer, rest assured I’ll have another post in no time!
UPDATE: I am extra excited to post this as I just found out Fortaleza was listed as the 10th destination on the rise around the world by TripAdvisor! I am so excited for people all around the world to finally see this city that is so dear to me. Check out what TripAdvisor had to say here.