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Una Nueva Vida

Una Nueva Vida

It’s been exactly two weeks since I left for Santiago.  In the short amount of time I’ve been here, I already feel like a Chilean.  Their lifestyle fits me perfectly.  They’re casual, laid back and like to have fun.  Above all, they know how to live in the moment.

Chileans show a lot of affection towards one another.  The first time someone went towards me for a kiss on the cheek, it definitely threw me off.  However, it’s how people greet each other here as well as to say goodbye.  After two weeks, I’ve come to like this custom.  It’s more personal and meaningful than shaking hands.

I’ll admit, learning a new language is hard.  Back in Chicago, I volunteer as an English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher.  This is how my students must feel!  It’s frustrating not being able to express myself fully. However, this is one reason I came here: to learn Spanish!  Mi mamá only speaks Spanish.  At times it’s difficult to communicate, but it’s good practice for me!  Mis hermanos know some English, so we help each other learn the other language.  My classes are difícil, but I can already tell I’m learning so much!

Last weekend, I went to the coast to see one of the houses of Pablo Neruda, a famous literary icon from Chile.  His home was unreal.  Everything was so beautiful!  Afterwards, I ate some of the most delicious seafood of my life and explored the coast.  I also happened to stumble upon the largest pool in the world!

Mi hermano, Ignacio (aka Nacho), has a friend named Nicolás who happens to have a beautiful house!  My friends and I compare it to a hobbit hole in the movie The Hobbit.  His front door looks just like Bilbo’s!  There’s a pool in the backyard and it feels like a private resort, especially with the palm trees.  The best part though is hanging out with the Chileans. 🙂

The nightlife here is definitely in full swing!  It’s great to be able to dance to my favorite music in Spanish, such as Daddy Yankee’s song ‘Limbo’ which is currently number one in Chile.  Staying out late to dance is normal for Chileans.

People here don’t say adiós, they say ciao.  So… ¡Ciao mis amigos!

My beautiful university!

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