Bem vindo! Today I’m going to post a virtual tour of our house and complex. We are happy here, and I want to share why.
Totally worthy tangent first. Neither of us had ever been to Dourados until we’d already committed to moving here, so we didn’t know much about the city. We (mostly Matt) used Google Maps a lot to learn about our new hometown. He actually found our complex on Google Maps’ satellite view, because its footprint, with a large park-like green space in the middle, is pretty unique. After we’d narrowed down potential places to live, it was fun to use Google Maps’ street view to start to imagine what it would be like to move around Dourados. This was back in early spring (Matt made his first trip here in May).
Fast-forward to August, when the kids started at Wings. The teachers there told us that there was another child attending the school whose parents had lived in Canada for several years. He was learning English at home and would be in Oscar’s class. We were delighted, and we tracked them down (in a not-creepy way at all, I promise!) at the school’s Festa da Agostina later that month. We’ve spent some really nice afternoons with the whole family, and we learned that prior to his current job, Oscar’s friend’s dad led a team to map a major region of our state, including Dourados, for Google Maps! So we owe no small thanks to our new friend for helping us get acquainted with and continuing to navigate this city.
Back to the tour. The place we ultimately chose to live has perfectly accommodated our family with a comfortable condominium, and common spaces for our kids to play and for us to interact with our neighbors. Nearly all of the standalone houses that we’ve seen in Dourados are walled off or gated. Many have patio-like outdoor spaces in the rear of the house, but very few have any space out front, which makes sense because many homes are also closely situated to the streets they’re on. It would have been difficult for us to meet our neighbors if we’d rented a house like that.
Instead, we live here.
The tour wouldn’t be complete without showing you what makes our home really special, which is our shared outdoor space. All the benefits of a yard and pool with none of the maintenance! (Seriously, this fall, Matt and I couldn’t stop high-fiving each other about not raking and cleaning out garden beds.)
And that’s really why this place has been perfect. Dourados isn’t a mega-city with a million things to do and see, nor does it have a huge international community. We knew our adventure here would be about forming relationships with Brazilians and about experiencing life as a family in a new environment. Check and check.