Teen set for Brazilian adventure
JUST 21 days remain until Warwick teenager Jiah Long (17) heads to Brazil for the trip of a life time.
As the only rotary exchange student in the area, Jiah considers herself lucky to be chosen to represent Australia in the colourful South American nation.
"I am not really nervous at all. Just happy to be going," she said.
While in Brazil Jiah will live with a host family, learn and speak Portuguese and have an opportunity to be immersed in the culture.
Not having any prior knowledge of South American culture and only being able to count to 10 in Portuguese hasn't swayed Jiah's passion for Brazil.
"Rotary asked us to pick a country which suits our personality the most, so I thought Brazil was perfect.
"The people are so kind and laid back."
Brazil, a country well known for its carnivals and for hosting the 2014 FIFA World Cup, is a nation overflowing with flavour and excitement.
The city of Osasco Sao Paulo, which is home to more than 700,000 people will be a huge contrast to the sleepy streets of Warwick.
"I think the biggest difference will really be the transition from a small town to a large city," Jiah said.
While she spends the year in the country, Jiah hopes to be visited by her siblings, including older brother Jarien Long who participated in the Rotary exchange program to Belgium in 2010.
Jiah was quick to claim that the exchange idea was hers to begin with.
"I did have the idea first, not my brother. I have always wanted to do it."
The Kumon School in the town of Osasco Sao Paulo will be where the Warwick High school graduate will spend the year.
The transition will be made a little easier as her host mother is the local English teacher.
She will also have younger host sisters aged 14 and 1.
The bubbly teen has already invested in many souvenirs for the friends she will meet, filling her bag with kangaroo and koala themed knick knacks.
"I am sure I will also teach them a little bit of Aussie slang as well," she said.