I feel like recently I have had kind of a negative attitude to my cultural experiences here in Santiago...what does that mean? That some things are driving me crazy! Getting shoved onto the subway in the morning, all public transportation in general and of course that silly calefont! But yesterday on my daily 13 minute walk from my house to Pablo´s, I thought about all the things I really do LOVE about Chile and thought I would make a list for you!
1.) Foggy/smoggy mornings. I love it when it decides to be cool in the morning but I also love it when you can see the Andes and Santiago´s skyline.
2.) Once. (Pronounced on-say) This is what Chileans eat instead of dinner or supper--generally a cup of herbal tea, Ecco or in my case Milo (hot coccoa) with bread and butter and if you are lucky, some manjar. I don´t know why, but this is my favorite meal of the day!
3.) Kids playing in the street. Almost every single day there are kids playing soccer in the street. The street are narrower here and not so full of traffic and the kids will play for hours and hours outside. If there aren´t enough for two teams, then just kicking the ball back and forth will do. And the soccer ball is always one that has been used for years now and doesn´t even look like a soccer ball anymore!
4.) Attending church here. There are a few crazy members in every ward that make my Sunday´s just a little more interesting. Oh, gotta love how blunt Chileans are!
5.) Asado. Americans think that they know how to do barbeques but they do NOT. Unless you have half a pig, cow, a few chickens and chorizo on your grill (coal not propane) then you don´t understand!
6.) El Centro. Downtown Santiago where I work is one of my favorite parts. Pablo and I could walk around looking at shops, eating Mote con Huesillo and watching crazy people all afternoon. This was something new to me since this part of Santiago wasn´t in my mission. I wish I could fully describe how fun and entertaining this part of Santiago really is.
7.) Watching subtitled movies in the theater. Last night we went to The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and because the movie was subtitled, everyone would start laughing before Brad Pitt had said the punch line (because they had already read it)
8.) I love how after a long, hot day everyone is outside enjoying the coolness of the evening. You can always seem to find a good bargain for a completo or papas fritas and all the old people sit outside and talk until it is finally time to go to bed.
These are just a few of the things I love about Santiago--if you have some others, add them to the list!