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Posts Tagged ‘ Chile ’

LONG OVERDUE UPDATE

Hi everyone! Sorry for my lack of posts in the past few weeks. I have been really busy with school, being sick, and travelling, so I haven’t been as diligent with keeping my blog updated. So here are a few updates on life in Valpo and sneak peaks at my next few posts. TERREMOTO: I experienced my first earthquake in Chile today and it was terrifying for me, but everything ended fine. I was just mentally freaked out by it. At its origin the earthquake was a 7.1 and where […]

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Everywhere is Having an Environmental Crisis

The landscape in Chile leaves me in awe time and time again. With the coast on one side and Andes on the other, Chile is a picturesque country. However, its land is not immune to being reshaped and extorted for natural resources. During my cultural geography course last night, my professor was discussing environmental issues in Chile. The first example we talked about was a mine in southern Chile, the Pascua-Lama, that is contaminating the glacier water reserves. The mine was the first bi-national open mine in the world and […]

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NOT JUST HERE FOR THE EMPANADAS (I GO TO SCHOOL TOO)

Despite what my blog posts and Instagram pictures show, I’m not just in Chile for hiking, sightseeing, and eating. My main purpose for travelling to Chile is to improve my ability to communicate in Spanish and one of the ways I am doing this is by attending classes at La Pontificia Catolica Universidad de Valparaíso (PCUV) three days a week.  Through my program, I was able to enroll directly in classes at La Catolica, in the international studies program, or in classes taught exclusively for CIEE (the program I am […]

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LA CAMPANA HIKE

My legs really hate me today, but yesterday was so worth it. I left my house at seven a.m. to meet six other girls from my program in Valparaíso to take a train and a bus to La Campana National Park. The park is about 25 miles from the coast, but the landscape changed dramatically once we left the city. In Valparaíso and Viña del Mar the geography is flat near the beaches and then extreme hills a mile or so inland. However, in the countryside there are more mountains than […]

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The Arrival, The Family, and The Market

I’m three days into this adventure and already I have some things I want to share. I took off from Chicago on Wednesday and landed in Miami, where the plane to Santiago was delayed by over two hours. Eventually I arrived in Chile and met up with the CIEE group. From the airport thirty five of us took a bus to Valparaíso on the coast of the country. From the get go, the program has kept us busy with activities to better acquaint us with our new country. I met […]

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Extranando mi país: The Not So Easy Aspects of Being Abroad

As I mentioned in my last post, seeing all the families together during Fiestas Patrias caused a bout of homesickness. And it still isn’t quite over. It’s been 2 months since I arrived in Chile, and the honeymoon stage is coming to end. We’re now in the daily grind of school and all the initial excitement is starting to wear off. Please keep in mind throughout this entire post that I am extremely and eternally grateful for this opportunity to be abroad, and I wouldn’t change anything for the world. […]

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Fiestas Patrias

Happy belated birthday Chile! For those of you who don’t know, Chile’s Independence Day was September 18th. Instead of a measly day off and some lame fireworks like in the U.S., however, Independence Day turns into a week of celebrations. There are asados (BBQ) literally every three houses. People cram into fondas (I’m still not entirely sure of the best way to translate this..they’re basically like state fairs in various places where various vendors set up shop and people eat outrageous amounts of food). If you’re not drinking terremotos (a […]

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And so it begins.

Over the course of my stay here, I have come to realize my host mom very much believes in psychics and their associated practices. One night, she asked her pendulum if I was going to find a boyfriend over the next few months. The affirmative response then prompted Luci to look through her entire contact list for friends who have younger, single sons. Not only did she look, but she called a couple of said friends to inform them I am in search of Chilean friends. Last night, sitting in […]

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Samantha: Time flies…

So I have neglected to blog in a very very long time!!! Wow. Exciting things that have happened… Halloween was very low key here. Mom sent me a box that I got the day before Halloween that had cupcake decorations! Good timing! I made cupcakes and frosting from scratch and shared them with my host family, Nico’s family and his friends. Nico’s band played a fundraiser concert at his old high school. They did a really good job and my two gringa friends that went with thought they were good […]

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Samantha: the past two weeks

The weekend of October 9th I went to a small surf town north of where I live. My “cousin” Sara (she is an exchange student from Michigan and lives in Santiago with my host family’s aunt) and I stayed in a cabin on the ocean!! Friday was beautiful but Saturday was cloudy and cold so we came home to Viña where it was sunny and warm! On Sunday night we went to a Daddy Yankee concert! It was a lot of fun but we were surprised that a lot of […]

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Samantha: Fiestas Patrias

The 18th of September is the date that Chile celebrates their patriotism. Almost every family has an asado which is a barbeque. I started celebrating on Thursday the 17th with an asado at my friend Nicolas’ house, with his family and family friends. On Friday the 18th my family had friends over for another asado. People started arriving at 2pm and didn’t leave until 11pm!! Everyone brought a salad to contribute to the meal. On Friday night I went to a friend’s house in Concon which is 30 minutes from […]

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Samantha: It’s Almost Spring!

Winter is almost over!!! Spring starts September 21st and I cannot wait. The days are starting to get warmer, last week the temperature got over 75 degrees Fahrenheit! I am learning more and more Spanish and making more and more Chilean friends! Last weekend I traveled with my family to a summer house in the country! There we celebrated the birthday of three of their cousins who have birthdays in September. There is always an abundance of food which almost always includes grilled chicken and fresh vegetables. Their birthday cakes […]

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Samantha: Day to Day

I have had almost all of my classes now and like them very much! Two are taught by instructors that specialize in Spanish as a second language. My writing class Professor explained to me that it is part of their culture to stare at people, so I have become accustomed to people looking at me. I am taking a Cognitive Psychology class, which I knew was going to be a challenge. I understand about 40% of what my professor says. After the first class I turned to the other exchange […]

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Samantha: Chile!

I arrived in Chile on the 25th of July! My days have been full of getting to know my family, the cities of Valparaiso and Vina del Mar and my University! I live with a mom named Sandra, her husband Horacio and their three children, Camila (19), Javiera (17), and Matias (16). We live in a calm residential neighborhood called Miraflores from which I take a bus called a Micro to my University or other areas of Vina del Mar or Valparaiso. The people here drive very fast and seemingly […]

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