The GoGlobal Blog

Author: Christine Jaballas

Food and adventure enthusiast. Sophomore. International Studies and Spanish.
El Gato Diablo

El Gato Diablo

In case you didn't believe me that he looks like Grumpy Cat. is proof.
In case you didn’t believe me that he looks like Grumpy Cat. is proof.

My friend Maya (who is also an LUC student) lives with Jake the Cat, otherwise known as Grumpy Cat’s twin. When I first met this cat, I thought he was the cutest and most behaved cat I’d ever met. Not only did he just lounge around the pool all day, but he let everyone pet him! When Maya and I told her host mom about the famous Grumpy Cat in the states, she proceeded to explain to us how Jake the Cat is never allowed to leave the house because he’s too expensive to lose. Also, that if Jake the Cat were ever lost they would not buy another cat to replace him because of how expensive he was, so pretty much all I know about this cat is that he’s expensive and his name is Jake. Anyways, last week Maya’s chilean family went to the beach all day, so after class a group of us went to Maya’s house to plan our trip to Argentina and the family told Maya to keep Jake in the mother’s room until everyone left so she did.

As soon as everyone left at around like 6-ish, we let Jake out because we felt bad because he’d been trapped in there all day and then we started working on our presentation that was due the next day.While we were working outside on their patio, which is next to their mini backyard with tiny pool,some tall trees, and a fence separating their yard from their neighbors. 20 minutes into working on our presentation, Jake the Cat sees a bird and begins to scale the tree. Remembering the previous conversation about this expensive cat, Maya and I freak out and coax him to come down from the tree. After a couple failed attempts, Jake the Cat finally climbed down and nonchalantly walked away from us as if nothing had happened. This is where Maya and I should’ve learned our lesson, because 15 minutes later, Jake the Cat sees another bird and scales the other tree and decides to jump over the fence into the neighbor’s backyard. Immediately, we begin to hyperventilate and start screaming ideas out on how to retrieve the cat. The first and foremost one being to go to the neighbor’s house and ask politely if we can retrieve the cat. However, while working on our presentation I plugged in my laptop charger into an outlet on the patio and blew a fuse. (Chilean outlets are different from US ones, and you need a converter in order to use anything electric.) This comes into play because the front gate to Maya’s house is usually buzzed open electrically. We came to figure this out however, when I tried to buzz myself out and the door wouldn’t open, preventing me from reaching the cat. We finally find the keys and i’m trying to explain to Maya’s neighbor that there’s a cat in his backyard and that I need to retrieve him but he’s completely ignoring me and not even listening to me because I obviously am not speaking spanish very well and that is when the cat finally makes its way to the front of the neighbors house. But the story does not end there, nope, Jake the Cat will not let anyone grab him and after 20 minutes of chasing him around the front of the house, I finally grab Jake, put him upstairs and close all the doors to the outside world, so we can finally fix the electricity. Their neighbor came over and fixed the electricity and the world was good again. Until…

5 minutes into working on our presentation, we hear a ton of crap falling like someone had knocked it over huge dominoes. Our immediate first though: WHERE IS JAKE?!

Frantically, I’m looking under the couches and dinner table etc and then I hear Maya screaming, “NOW I KNOW WHY MY HOST MOM CLOSES THE BATHROOM DOOR!?

Chileans don’t believe in screens, like no screen doors, no screen windows.

Everything is just open. all. the.time.


I make my way upstairs and there are shampoo bottles and conditioner bottles all over the bathroom floor and I look out the window and Jake is on the roof.

His eyes are glowing red and I wanted to murder him.

I run downstairs, climb up on a chair, and reach out on the roof to retrieve this cat.

I finally coax him with food to come to me and we stick him in the mother’s bedroom.

We did not do s*** that day.

Maya and I got our a**es kicked by a cat.

Like round-house kicked by Jake the Cat.

Passport Problems

Passport Problems

Last Friday, all of us in the program went to the Foreign Police Department to register our visas. If I could compare this system to anything in the United States it would be the DMV…but a million times worse. There is only one Foreign Police Department in all of Santiago, so you can imagine every single foreigner is there. We all arrived promptly at around 9:00, an hour after it opens, and received our numbers which were in the 170’s-180’s. Upon obtaining our numbers, we passed the monitor that showed what numbers they were on, and they were only on 20. Not only was this place crowded, but the system was so slow that we ended up waiting there for 4 hours just to register our visas. Within those 4 hours, I took 2 naps and ate a snack. It also was around 90 degrees that day so we were all pretty sweaty and exhausted by the time our numbers were called. After registering our visas, we left at around 1:00pm to rush to the second office to obtain our Chilean identity numbers, which I think of as a social security number or driver’s license number perhaps. The only catch was that the office closed at 2:00pm, and the office was maybe half a mile away. All of us pretty much ran to the other office and made it just as they were about to close but luckily they took pity on us and we were the last people to be helped. Covered in sweat and panting like a dog, I excitedly gave my documents and passports to the lady who suddenly had a quizzical look on her face. She exchanged a couple words with the woman next to her with my passport in hand and then moved on to the next cubicle and the next. My stomach dropped because I knew there was something wrong, and low and behold, the woman explained to me that the man at the airport stamped my passport saying that I left Santiago on January 10th instead of that I arrived. Furthermore, she told me that the Foreign Police Department should have caught this mistake and that I would need to redo this process all over again. ALL OVER AGAIN. A whole day’s worth of waiting and sweating to be rejected because the man at the airport used the wrong stamp. Anywho, I re-did the process today with success and NO WAITING IN LINE! I was very lucky today, so maybe my luck is changing around. Point learned- make sure customs uses the correct stamp because otherwise it’s a pain in the butt to get it fixed.






The colloquial term for boyfriend/girlfriend in Chile is “pololo/a.” One of the very first things I noticed in Chile is that there are many young couples. Not only are there many young couples, but they are not afraid to show their love each other in public. In the parks, on the streets, in restaurants, and the metro, there are couples embracing each other as if there were no other people around. South America itself is a very touchy region, it is common to kiss cheeks as a greeting. One of my classmates even theorized that these young couples show their affection publicly because they usually remain in their parents’ home until late twenties, or whenever they get a job. I’m assuming living with the ‘rents for that long doesn’t entail a lot of privacy. Even in the host family that I’m staying with, the two boys still live with their mother and they are both in their twenties. It’s easier and more affordable for the children to live with their parents while going to school, which is the case of both my host brothers. Anywho, yesterday my class went on a guide of Santiago. We started out in Plaza de Arma, and for about 4 hours we walked around all of central Santiago city. One of the places we stopped at was Moneda, which is the equivalent to the White House in America. It’s considered their president’s house, and attached is a picture of all of us in front of it! (Check out my palm tree pants!!) There are 11 of us students that are in the program at Universidad Alberto Hurtado, and they’re all pretty awesome. La Moneda_2015-1 (1)


Anywho, I’m off to bed, I have class tomorrow morning.





Ciao !

After spending the last day in America sick with the flu, I made it to Chile! For all you Chicagoans, it is ridiculously hot over here. It’s been 90+ degrees and I’m already super tan. ;] The language barrier is real, it’s only been 2 days, but it has been very frustrating communicating with my host family at times. However, they’ve been nothing but nice to me and more than accommodating to my needs! I think my new favorite word is qué? Atleast, I’ve been saying it after every comment made towards me since I’ve landed. Like typical me, I’ve already been to the mall in Chile. It’s apparently the tallest and biggest in all of South America,which does not surprise me because I went three times today (for various reasons) and I still haven’t seen half of the mall. It’s absolutely gigantic. The currency exchange here is also crazy. I’m not exactly sure what the conversion is, I’ll have to double check, but I feel rich ;D. Anywho, I have class tomorrow at 9:30am, so I’m heading off to bed.