Sunday, June 16, 2013

Expats Blog, Some Not So Exciting Events, and the Winter Doldrums

So winter has set in here in Santiago.

But before I get to that, I should share some news.  I have completed an online interview about my experience as an expat living in Santiago.  If you are interested in reading it or connecting with other expats in other parts of the world, I recommend checking out the site.  (For those that are not technologically inclined, click on the underlined text to go directly to my interview or the expats blog website.)

Beyond, that, not much is happening.  Luckily there haven´t been any epic rainstorms since the last one I posted about, and there hasn´t been anything particularly interesting happening here lately.  I figure not every post can be filled with adventure, but I also figure it´s important to document and consider the daily occurrences too.

So here are some of the things that have happened:

Eclass had a celebration for reaching a goal of 150,000 students.  It was a lunch celebration complete with churrasco sandwiches, mini desserts, and six cakes.  The line to get food was long, but it was worth the wait.  Unfortunately I had to go to class before they started cutting the cake, but it was still a nice event seeing that they included everyone in the celebration.

The churrasco chef
Some of the pastries that were my dessert
My unexpected second lunch

Another thing that happened was meeting up for a friend for a drink.  I usually am content to go home right after work (even if I finish early), but things worked out for us to meet up.  We went to a bar near metro Colon, and it had a really interesting ambiance:

My friend was one of the others that came here with TeachingChile, and her and I were both thrown into really difficult situations that we worked through together.  Even though we don´t get to see each other often, it´s always nice catching up with her and sharing what´s happening in our lives.

The last thing that happened was yesterday morning.  When I looked out my window in the morning this is what I saw:

To give you an idea, this is what I can usually see from my window:

I was worried that there was some huge smog event, and I had to go out that morning.  So I did my best to prepare myself:

Luckily when I asked the doorman about it, he told me that it was only fog due to 99% humidity.  Sure enough, the air was fine to breathe.

With nothing exciting happening I find myself getting bored.  So I typically spend my weekends lesson planning and blogging, and they look something like this:

Sorry for the glare.  If you can´t tell, that´s a cup of tea and
a slice of chocolate mousse cake in front of my teaching stuff.
Condi is a great coffee shop near my apartment, and I can sit for 2, 3, or even 4 hours and do work, blog, write, or catch up on emails.

But the boredom isn´t all that bad.  I do have something to look forward to.  I will be home in Jersey for a visit from the 4th of July to the 19th (I didn´t write about this before, didn´t I?), and I find myself looking forward to the visit and counting down the days.  This will be my first summer in the States since I came to Chile, so that´s going back to July of 2009.  I´m looking forward to catching up with family and friends, going to the beach, eating the food I miss, shopping, and the general feeling of familiarity and security that comes with home.

At the same time, I know that I will have my students here in Chile on my mind, as another teacher will be teaching their classes in my absence.  There´s also the tradeoff of losing money whenever you don´t teach as a freelance teacher, but I´m trying not to think about that too much.  (You typically don´t have paid vacation or time off as a freelance teacher in Chile).

That´s all for now.  Happy Father´s Day to all the dads out there and I hope you´re enjoying your weekend!


  1. Hi, I'm an expat from the U.S. living in Argentina. I've enjoyed reading about your experiences in Chile. I'm actually two days away from celebrating my one year anniversary in Argentina. For some reason, the culture shock and the homesickness is getting worse for me lol

  2. I'm sorry to hear about the culture shock and homesickness but how exciting that your one year anniversary is coming up! It isn't always easy, and living abroad can be an isolating experience. It's easier said than done, but keep your head up and keep trying to connect with others in your area. Thanks for reaching out and commenting.

  3. Cool interview! Totally agree with the not needing a car part... I don't have one here, but it would sure make my life a whole lot easier! I miss the easy transport of Santiago! Also the cheap fruit... a pint of strawbs here is about $5!!!!

  4. "So I did my best to prepare myself" made me LOL when I saw your photo.

  5. I also love the cheap fruit here too Britt! And I´m glad you got a good laugh out of my picture Phoenix. Did you venture out on that day too?