Chileans have taught me that the answer to that question must unflinchingly be, “Behaving myself well! I ALWAYS behave myself well,” Then you gotta’ flash a perfect grade-school yearbook grin…trust me, it’ll save you a lot of time.
Hello Blogging Friends!
I’ve really had my hands full in Chile, and it’s very hard for me to come close to diving into everything that’s happened over the past 5 months. I’ll do my best to give you a brief synopsis!
1. Became a preschool teacher:
Yes, that’s right! I’ve become an English teacher to pre-schoolers in La Quinta Region de Chile. I’ve realized that working with pre-schoolers is one of my callings (teary face). The pre-schoolers in Chile are hyperactive, and with that enthusiasm they have some wonderful insights—- teaching them has been a very worthy challenge. I’ve been coming to class with new games and ideas almost every week. We learn by playing, and we play a lot!! Much more on this to come :D.
2. Moved to Valparaiso
Did you read about the city in Chile that had over 10,000 houses burn down due to a complete catastrophe of city planning?? Yea, so I moved there, and it’s actually turned out to be a great decision! I carefully chose a (relatively secure) apartment within walking distance of lots of cool sites of inspiration. There are some universities, a nearby beach, a beautiful naval base, some GIGANTIC construction sites, and the soccer stadium where Chile plays its international friendlies. Not too bad, eh?? All for a price that is less than half of what I was paying in Viña Del Mar (they are adjacent cities). I’m definitely the only gringo dude in my neighborhood, so that makes me feel legit!
Valpo is a marine city that’s wonderfully colorful, and it’s also quite gritty. The people here are the roots of Chile—-there are no malls and they are keepin’ it that way. By “roots of Chile” I also mean that there is a greater likelihood of getting robbed, so it’s important to be observant! Don’t worry, no incidents so far :D.
What I love most about Valpo is how charismatic most of the people are. It doesn’t matter what their social class is, or how old they are, or what they look like, people here just want to talk (and sell you stuff). The city is not as well organized as Viña, but amidst the nonsense there is something very mystic about it.
My new park for exercising and doing my tonteras!
Here is an entry to a naval port. Lot of Army and Navy personnel walkin round here…………NOT A PLACE TO BE SLACKIN.
Here is a neighborhood that was devastated by the fires that occurred April 12th-16th. I went to help clean up the remains a few of times, and it was amazing to see the number of enthusiastic volunteers. I could hear songs from many directions, and the people at each of the sites were super friendly— it almost reminded me of a tailgate to a football game. I know that sounds terrible because so many people lost everything…. what I’m saying is that the atmosphere and the attitude that the volunteers helped foster was downright impressive!!
3. Been working out a lot:
Since I’m generally pretty short on money I’ve picked up going on runs and doing pull-ups on a more regular basis…. they’re inexpensive hobbies :D. It’s also a great way for me to get out my pent up energy (got a bit of that). Of course, what’s exercising without making some fun videos to get me jacked to do more!?!? Here are a few:
This is a video of me working out with my trainer, practicing some handstands along the beach of Viña Del Mar (btw my trainer costs the equivalent of $6 an hour. Try to find his quality for that price in the US….ain’t happening!)
On the second video I invented a few unique exercises. Just kickin’ it with my buddy on a Sunday morn!
On the third video (and BEST VIDEO of the three) a different buddy let me strap his Go Pro to my head and we played a soccer game! I added a Chilean folk song in the background to capture the feeling of playing in a pick-up game… I believe we did it justice!
4. I’ve decided to make a new blog:
My personal styles have evolved a bit, and rather than changing the complexion of this blog, I’d rather branch off into something fresh. I want a blog that I can show to anybody of any age (I don’t want schools hounding me because of profanity. If anything I want schools and parents to be fascinated by the blog). So ShortSightedYouth will remain a glimpse of my more informal life in Chile, and my blog (link below) will explore other concepts more specific learning and what it means to me (sounds boring, huh? Nahh, It’ll be good!!)
Next Post for ShortSightedYouth: “Top 5 Chilean Street Dogs!!”
First Post for LearnDynamic: “Squeezing the Juice Out of Every Second! Lesson and Workout.”
It’s officially been over a year for ShortSightedYouth. I want to thank everybody for all the comments and love during the first go-around. For those of you anticipating the next blog, I’ll leave you with this.
JULY 2014. Talk like a teacher. Learn like a bandit. LEARN DYNAMIC.com