The 18th of September was a celebration of 200 years of independence from Spain. Most people had work and school off for five days of partying... for us, it began Thursday after class:
Happy to be free at last
We learned to dance the Cueca (the national dance of Chile)
That night we went out together to an Irish pub and Chilean restaurant
I had a sleepover with someone every night of the weekend so that we didn't travel home alone at night (at this point, 3-4 AM, picture taking wasn't done carefully)
In the morning we played frisbee!
Then went out again to a fonda (a party during independence day) to see live music
...................And we danced........................................... and we cried,
..........................................and had a really, really, really good time! (and no, I haven't heard this song yet in Chile, but I'm sure it's only a matter of time since they do play lots of foreign pop songs)
We had an extended family lunch the next day with Chilean wine and empenadas (traditionally these are bread baked around meat, onions, one egg, and one olive)
And then out again that night to another fonda with live music and, as always, lots of dancing
That night I spent a bit of time with spiderman (the very crazy 5 year old brother of my friend)...
Before heading out to an asado (Chilean barbaque, with my favorite: choripan, a kind of hot dog with chorizo sausage in fresh bread topped with pebre-tomatoes, onions, cilantro and something spicy)
Here we chatted with some Brazilians about politics, ate, drank and played music. Though still late into the night, it was much more relaxed to have a quiet asado with adults after going out with "jovenes" (young people) every night that weekend.
I finished the long weekend with some homemade sopapillas, homework, and a father-daughter drum lesson...
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Thursday, September 16, 2010
So every 9/11 there is a huge march through the city. This year more than 8,000 people participated.
... as well as people who were marching in memory of missing loved ones
People were spray painting the walls
We walked through the Santiago cemetery towards the car
Leaving the protected area required to us walk by literally more than 15 or 20 police
That night I went back to Hayley's house, had a traditional Chilean dish and watched a concert DVD of a Chilean artist I like as well as footage of violent protests in the 80's during Pinochet's regime, then headed to a different friend's house to sample Chilean wine, exchange stories and generally relax with friends. Early night in Chile... 3 AM. ¡Nos vemos!
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Hola mis amigos (hello my friends)! I'm now in Santiago, comfortably settled in my third floor apartment with a wonderful family, attending classes every day, and close enough to walk to most of the major centers in the city.
I live on a tiny street that only runs one block called Capuchinos
Sebastian (Ta-tan) is 25 and is studying film in Santiago. He's in his 3rd year of university so he's really busy much of the time.
Javier is 20 and is studying drums privately (but for a degree). He is in a serious relationship and has a daughter who is one year old and adorable (from the pictures, I haven't met her yet but I will soon!). He works as a DJ every night (from 9 PM to around 4 AM) in a local bar. Ta-tan also works there on weekends as a bartender and cook.
There is one other brother (27) who lives in France and plays cello, I don't think I get to meet him...
Most mornings I go for a run in a park that's about 10 blocks north of my house. Hopefully this will help get me in shape for the pickup frisbee I play with some really good players on Sundays...
In the mornings I walk to school (~20 minutes). I usually hang out in this sunroom before class begins
The old castle is beautiful, with antique cannons, pools and fountains