Tragedy, Purpose and Small Pleasures

So I've been rather reflective following the news of the death of a fellow IMS alumnus, Jason Marner last Friday.  While I make no claims of us being close friends, I do remember him fondly, even though he was 2 years behind me.  I don't look back on any deep or memorable moments we ever had, but he was a positive guy and left a good impression on me.  He had a brother with special needs and I specifically remember several times being filled with so much respect when watching the two of them interact.  And it's hard not to take a step back when someone so young passes away suddenly.  And while I've shed tears and still find it creeping into my mind several times a day, it's undoubtedly hightened my awareness of what it truely is to be alive.  I guess you could say it's given me the motivation to step back and reevaluate goals and dreams while putting life in perspective.  I've been able to remind myself of my excitement for the future while not taking the present for granted.

I truly am blessed to be here in Brazil at the SAD and wouldn't trade this time for anything.  I've fallen in love with so much here that I'm so grateful that it will always be a part of who I am, no matter where I go next. 

While nothing extraordinary has been happening (other than my fablous 4th of July party, which I'll report on later) I've decided to once again take note of some of the insignificant happy things that make up my life here. 

World Cup games are now narrowing down in frequency as it's down to the final four (none of which are Brazil).  And although the country has gotten bored and stopped watching since Brazil got beaten out of it, my new darling friend Pauli is from Uruguay, so I've been given incentive to continue cheering.  I'll miss it when it's gone.

GC Session is over.  And while the offices here are still quiet (everyone took advantage of being in the States to take vacation time there) we're anxiously awaiting the changes which are soon to come.  We lost 5 and are gaining 6 new work companions here at the Division.  Exciting changes ahead!