Hola from Providencía, Santiago de Chile, Chile.
Welcome to my blog!
This is my first official week here in Chile, and in just one week I’ve seen and have learned so much! I want to construct my first blog in segments; my first day, what I’ve noticed so far that is different from the US (or NC), and three things I already love about Chile! I want to start off by walking you guys through my first day, when I touched down to Chile!
My host mom, Maria, picked me up from the airport and she drove me to her apartment. She gave me a tour of the apartment, let me know where I could keep my belonging and gave me time to unpack my things. I was very excited to know that I would have my own personal bathroom and even more excited when she told me that she has a dog! After I unpacked, Maria and I took a tour/walk around the block; she took me to places where I could exchange my money and showed me the possibly banks I could use to withdraw money from. Then, she took me to get a metro (Subway/train) card. Maria made sure I knew how to get around via the metro being that it is my main source of transportation. She taught me how to read the train station map and how to know I’m on the right train, she also made sure I knew how to say which street I live on and she made sure I knew how to pronounce it in Spanish. To sum it all up, Maria made sure I was straight. After she taught me everything I needed to know about the area, we went to the corner store, el farmacia, by her house because I forgot soap and a toothbrush (It wouldn’t be traveling if I didn’t forget a basic necessity). Afterwards, we went to a bakery called Castaño (They have one on almost every corner here) and I bought an empanada (So good!). Finally, we went back to her apartment and after a long day of traveling and getting settled in I took a long nap!
What I’ve noticed so far that is different from the US (or NC):
(1) Everyone that I’ve meet is extremely nice. They greet me with a hug complemented with a kiss on the cheek, just one cheek. It is very warming and gives me “welcoming” vibes!
(2) There are a lot of stray dogs! I see a minimum of 5 stray dogs a day. These dogs are not like the dogs I see in the U.S. though; they all act kind of like humans. They look both ways before they cross the street and they all seem to look very well feed and semi-clean. It’s like the city is looking out for them, and it is kind of amazing. The only downside, is that its winter time here so its freezing! I worry about the stray dogs at night; where they go to stay warm. (I worry about the homeless people too but this paragraph is about the doggies). I love how Chile is so welcoming to the them; not just to the stray ones but the ones that have owners as well. I see dogs everywhere, in stores and on buses; they even have signs saying that they are welcomed in places you would not expect.
The top three things I already love about Chile:
(1) Chileans do not rush to do anything! They take their time which to me, equals less stress.
(2) Chileans love quality time, they sit and talk for hours! Some companies have two hour lunches, which is full of talking about stuff non-work related and eating a hug meal. Lunch is the biggest meal of the day here, oppose to dinner.
(3) How welcoming and patient everyone seems to be; and helpful. For example, if I’m lost and stop someone for help they will make my problem theirs and won’t leave you until they’ve helped you.
This week has been filled with much adventure and many eye-opening events! I really hope you enjoyed reading my blog and can’t wait to share my next week with you all! Until next time, CHAU!