I just realized that I haven't delved into the whole interview/job search culture here in Brazil yet. For the past few months I've been trying to learn what I've been doing right and wrong in the whole search process. So here's a little example of the typical interview I've been attending.
For starters, the person will call today at saayyy... 5 PM and say, "Can you be here tomorrow at 10?" And I'll obviously say, "Sure, no problem, who are you again and where did you get my resumé from?" - I'm registered on like, 80 different job search websites, so it's important to know which ones are working and which aren't.
So then there's the adventure over there. Like I've mentioned before, it takes at least an hour and a half to get anywhere in São Paulo, and sometimes it's required to take a bus, train, and metro. So usually I'll leave home in a suit and sneakers and/or flip flops with some pumps in my bag just in case I get lost and/or have to walk kilometers upon kilometers to get places (yes, kilometers).
Once I get there, usually a few minutes early, I'll be offered coffee or water and then wait around for approximately 15-30 minutes for someone to talk to me (but this isn't ALL the time. Apparently not every Brazilian company runs on LT - Latino Time). I'm usually greeting by a sweet, young (no older than 30), HR person who takes me to a conference room or her office. I say sweet young girl, because literally, I've been interviewed by 2 men so far - and neither are in HR in their respective companies.
Ok, so the interview starts with "Let's have a little chat," and then proceeds to questions about my personal life such as "Why did you return to Brazil? If your parents are in the United States, who do you live with? Do you have a boyfriend? Did you leave a boyfriend in the United States? What do your parents do? What does your aunt who you live with do? How old are you?" .. and the list goes on.
And then come the professional questions and I have to explain the whole why my internships were only 3 months long, or randomly from September to May. I have to explain my major and how the whole college selection process works in the US. Needless to say, interviews are quite educational for whomever is interviewing me.
The BEST is when they bust out in English at the very beginning expecting to take me off guard, and then casually move into Portuguese once they realize I'm more fluent than they are... hehehehe.
The WORST is when they question my experience with Excel (which, let's be honest about honesty here... IS questionable...), and then ask me to write a one page essay in Portuguese in place of an essay in English which they would have asked of any other candidate. The good news is, I passed on to second interviews with the whole essay writing spiel. The bad news is, I officially need to take an Excel class!
So all in all I've gotten a couple of job offers for not so interesting positions, and some places were way too out of my league (i.e., in the Portuguese/Excel/Experience departments)... untilll..... I got a verbal job offer today at an interview for an internet marketing company for a position that sounds super interesting! The pay isn't great, but they're guaranteeing growth if I do well (which, you all know I'm going to try my best to do!! haha), so let's see how that plays out and I'll keep you all updated :-)
As for other news, a quick rundown of the past couple of weeks: I've taken on a couple of private students to bring in some extra income - one is preparing to be an au pair in the US, the other I'm preparing for a business meeting in Paris; I went to a wedding in Rio, the state, not city, a few weeks ago (lost all of my pictures when trying to transfer them to my computer which I'm still bitter about) of some friends of the family who used to live in the States, which was a lot of fun; last weekend I went out on Friday night with some people from work and that was bad news all over the place - especially since I worked last Saturday, haha; and then Saturday night I went to a Festa Junina with the familia which is a typical festival here that takes place in June (you know the big party I always danced in over the summer in D-Block? That kind of party!).
I'm taking it easy tonight (even easier than this night at work -I think I've broken some kind of record - I didn't teach any classes!) and probably just grabbing a drink after work because tomorrow I'm going shopping on one of the cheapo yet high fashiony type streets here in São Paulo early in the morning, and then playing it by ear for the rest of the weekend.
I think that's it. Sorry I've been neglectful. I will update more often, I PROMISE! (did I say that last time? ... hope not.)