Together, my grandparents had seven childrens, three boys and four girls. We always had a full house, as you can imagine and it was a joy. As normal, at some point in life the oldest ones had their own houses. But who does not need mother’s pampering at times?!
My grandfather’s mother’s had Portuguese descendent, native from Coimbra, so we could appeal for Portuguese nationality easily. Therefore, my mother’s oldest brother, immigrated to deal with documents and ensure that he could call he’s wife and kids and my mum later.
After my middle brother was born and our father disappeared again (laughs), my mother that was in her twenties, decided to immigrate to Portugal in order to achieve stability and new opportunities.
In 1999, we had to say goodbye to our grandma to go and live with our mother. I was six and my brother four years old, and we didn’t want to leave her and our cousins behind. It was one of the most difficult moments of my life.
At the aeroport, we were accompanied by a hostess, because we were under age to travel alone. We had never seen an airplane before, so be inside one was very scary, and my little brother couldn’t stop crying. But he eventually calmed down when we got to our sits.
Two hours on the plane isn’t much, but that flight in special felt like it took forever. Halfway through the trip the hostess, who was very friendly and helpful, brought us cheese and ham sandwiches with butter, and an orange juice as snack. Few minutes later, she came back and asked us if we were okay, and we answered yes. She smiled and gave us two chocolate bars each. We looked puzzled and asked her what was it.
“Chocolate and Cocoa production in our country was and is mainly for exportation. There were only a few, who could afford to buy it.”
Surprised with our question, she said that was a sweet and asked us if we’ve never had eaten it before. We said no, by shaking our heads and she told us to taste it, and that we would certainly like it. I loved it and quickly asked for more, but unfortunately, for my brother it was not quite like that.
Minutes later he began to feel ill and stayed for almost fifteen minutes (without exaggeration), throwing up in the bathroom. Since our body wasn’t familiar with chocolate, it was to much energy for him to consume at once, so he had an indigestion. Thank God, it was just a fright and we landed safely, at Lisbon aeroport.
The hostess escorted us, all the way to the exit, where our mother was waiting. Our reunion was filled with of tears of happiness, kisses and hugs, of course! And we finally felt safe.
And so began our new adventure in another country, environment and community. A completely different world for me.