WorldTeach Chile Semester: Day 1 on Site!

Our Chile Semester volunteers who departed in July are now out at their sites! Here, WorldTeach volunteer Ellen Eldridge shares with us a snapshot of her arrival at her site and her new home with a host family in Valparaiso after her group's orientation in Santiago.

Ellen's new neighborhood
  • 5:30am: I dragged myself out of bed.
  • 6:20am: From bus to bus, we were on our way to Viña del Mar.
  • 8:45am: We arrived in Viña del Mar, and the regional director told us where we were headed, which for me was Valparaiso.
  • 9:00am: The Valpo group said goodbye to Hannah, Ryan, Maureen, Lauren, Millie, and others from the IAP (Inglés Abre Puertas) program.
  • 10am: We dropped off Jen and Steph in their homes.
  • 11:00am: We went to my host family’s house, which sits on Cerro Alegre in Valparaiso, where I met my host mother Rosa/Rosita, who is a sweetheart and attentive host.
  • 11:30am: I hugged Grace, Kristy, and Roman goodbye.
  • 12:00pm: I put my clothes away in my room and started to straighten up mi habitación.
  • 12:01pm: Rosa brought me tea on a tray with sugar. Que generosa!
  • 12:30pm: Rosio, the daughter, came home from school.
  • 12:35pm: We had a large almuerzo of chicken soup, chicken and rice, salad of tomato, cucumber, and carrot.
  • 12:40pm: My host father returned home.
  • 12:45pm: My host father walked out of the room and Rosio asked me, “Estas pololeando?” or “Are you dating anyone?” I responded that I wasn’t and that I thought it was funny how people had warned me that Chileans love to ask about that.
  • 12:47pm: My host father came back and asked me “Estas pololeando?”. Rosio and I both laughed.
  • 12:45pm: My host mom Rosa told my host father that I don’t understand much, but sometimes I understand well. While I was sitting at the same table. I laughed, but I don’t think she knew I understood her. Ha!
  • 1:30pm: Mis padres anfitrionas went to work, and I sat at my computer while Rosio (mi hermana) played a variety of music including Hannah Montana, Jesse McCartney, the Jonas Brothers, Demi Lovato, etc.
  • 3:00pm: Rosio and I walked Terri the Terrier around the neighborhood, which he marked about every 10 steps. We talked about her school and how she attends less hours of school so she can study for the courses she has and spend time relaxing. There was a lot she said that I didn’t understand, but I think I gathered the jist of most of it.
  • 5:00pm: Cup #3 of tea for the day, yum!
  • 5:30pm: I am typing this blog. Yay! Bacán!
  • 5:45pm: Terri ran into my room, and Rosio told him to “Pórtate bien” or “Behave Yourself!

 The group: WorldTeach Chile Semester July 2010 [photo courtesy of Kristy Hui]

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