Renato Delboni
 
Renato, you are a young traveller from Brazil. What do you do when you are not travelling?
In the time I'm not travelling I'm with my family, friends or dogs having some kind of fun, meeting friends on weekends is something that I like, going out to a club to dance, going to some pub with too. Mostly though, when I'm not travelling I'm planning the next trip, or interacting on social networks with my friends.
Do you consider yourself a typical Brazilian? Why or why not?

Yes I do, based on the considerations that I hear in relation to Brazilian: solidarity, love to party, being friendly, optimistic, and loving football and caipirinha; I feel Brazil with the exception of the last two as I don´t play and don’t watch football also don´t drink caipirinha!

You are now spending a very long time travelling in Asia and Oceania. What fascinates you most about these far-away regions? 

The cultural diversity is very large in some situations, situations which even the films, reports or books do not show us in detail. The biggest fascination is due to the simplicity in which most people live, yet keeping their smile. In Asia the architecture of the temples, the existing history in them, the access I had to religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism and Islam which I have hardly known in my native country fascinated me, while the cuisine is also something incredible.
 
In Oceania, I have been so far to three countries. The natural beauty and crossing strangers on the street and being greeted with a simple hello are situations or elements that fascinate me.

Do you travel alone or with company? What is the advantage of the way you travel for you?

I travel alone, I've been with friends in some destinations, but almost all the trips were alone, being alone gives me freedom to decide my destinations, the time in these destinations, which sights to visit, the time to wake up and go to sleep, where I can sleep based on price, comfort and my lifestyle. It’s also a way to meet more people and I believe I'm more open to it, and adding to the advantages of being alone is that I can also have my moments of reflection quietly.

How do people react when you tell them you are Brazilian? Can you share some of these reactions with us?
In America (North and South) I have the impression that people have more access to information about Brazil, across the Atlantic the reaction is pretty much the same, all see it as a country of soccer and samba, which lets me surprise many who don´t know where Brazil is on the map, that the language we speak is definitely not Spanish and that our capital isn´t Rio de Janeiro and isn´t Buenos Aires.
 
Are you Brazilian? Hola como estas ? 
Oh Brazilian, soccer, Pelé, Ronaldo, Neymar..
(Laughs)
You have travelled a lot in South America, Europe and the Far East. Which countries you have been to were the greatest surprise (good or bad) and why?
I admit that is a difficult question to be objective. I will answer with some situations.
 
Bad:
In Argentina and Chile the negative surprise was with some dishonest taxi drivers. In Ecuador my baggage was opened and things stolen while I slept on the bus; in Tonga a few weeks ago I was surprised by a small earthquake whose magnitude was relatively low but it was the first time I felt the earth shake. In Thailand to see the exploitation and mistreatment of animals was something that made me very sad, first with elephants where tourists have fun with animals being made like machines to make money, and with monkeys at some points, selling birds in front of some Buddhist temples in Thailand and Laos were negative surprises. The lack of respect with pedestrians in Vietnam I considered a frightening surprise, motorcycles circling the sidewalks, while children driving motorbikes in Vietnam, Thailand and Myanmar without a helmet. Arriving at the airport in Bangladesh, and in the hotel, then in various places around town finding men (military) often heavily armed, I confess that scared me, I didn´t feel safe a minute. Seeing a visually impaired needing help to walk in a subway station in London, or another day a man with cuts in the mouth lying on the ground and everyone passing and not helping left me negatively surprised. The police stopped me in Dominican Republic and though I was in a regular vehicle and with al the right documentation they still asked bribe to let me be on my way.
 
Good:
The receptivity of Chileans, Scottish, and Asians (region I've been to - Southeast Asia) and the people of Oceania in general were great surprises, the solidarity of people in Asia and Oceania, the beauty of Malta, that small and shy country where I lived for 5 months was something to be remembered. Also I visited mosques in Brunei, Malaysia and in the latter in a Hindu temple it surprised me that locals and tourists get meals free in a temple of Melaka. Being present at the opening of the Palace this year and a banquet at the Brunei Palace with local people was amazing and a positive surprise.
What do your friends and family in Brazil think about your journeys? How do you feel when you are back in Brazil?

Many motivate me with their comments, consider me brave, would like to be together, some people think I'm rich, others think that there is someone paying my travels, forget the 22 years I worked without stopping (laughs), my mother would like me to be in Brazil next to her, my father would like to see me working and one day he asked me why do you travel? Are you a gypsy now?
 
I will return to Brazil with a lot of ‘luggage’ of knowledge about the world,  anxious to show pictures and tell stories, but it will only be a visit, today I am passionate about the world, I want to be a citizen of the world and not only of Brazil.

You have a Facebook page for now. Any plans for a blog? Why or why not?

Today I have a personal profile on Facebook and Instagram, follow me (lol), blogs, I believe that there are hundreds of this segment, it is difficult to keep and the idea does not motivate me at this time, perhaps in the future.

What are your travel plans for the next 6 months or so?

By December I will be between Oceania, Asia and Africa and probably in January start my travels through South America visiting countries that I have not been to yet, and then follow to Central America and North America.

Finally, here's a quirky one - if you could have one superpower, what would it be and why?

Peace and love between nations and a world where there would be no resistance to helping others when they are in need.

The photos in this article are from Renato's personal collection. They show him at Popeye's village in Malta, in Capadoccia (Turkey), as the sign indicates at Loch Ness, playing with local kids during a motorbike breakdown in Bagan (Myanmar), in winter guise in Prague, bungee jumping in Queenstown (New Zealand) and with the locals in Cuzco (Peru).

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