Day 10

You probably know how I’m going start this, so I won’t bore you with the usual details of my morning.

Grammar Class today was…interesting. Our lesson today was on phonetics and phonologics, something I still can’t understand without feeling like my brain is being slowly drawn out through my ear hole. The best way I can describe it is “phonetics” are the study of sounds that are made in speech, and “phonologics” are the way we interpret those sounds. It was mind-bogglingly confusing and nigh-impossible to understand, but all the same, the lesson was very interesting, and helped us to see some of the ways in which languages are formed and assembled. If I could wrap my head around it, I’d like to learn a little bit more about how these things work.

Lunch today was incredible as I discovered something new at the local bakery I frequent. I was looking in the display window at the different empanadas for sale and spotted something called a “napolitana” (or “neopolitan” in English) empanada. I wasn’t sure what it was, so I ordered one for my lunch that day, and it was one of the best decisions I had made. An empanada napolitana is an empanada stuffed with ham, tomatoes, red peppers, cheese, and oregano, so basically a pizza pocket. If you ever have the chance to try one when visiting Chile, DO NOT PASS UP THE CHANCE! These things are too good to pass up.

Conversation Class was an odd mix of things. We started out by playing hangman, and learning two new phrases that are common in Chilean slang. I can’t remember the first, but the second was “mala leche,” or “bad milk,” which is essentially the same as “bad egg” in English. Lilianna said that phrase was common slang, but I’ve never heard anyone use it in a sentence outside of Conversation Class before. After that, we had a brief discussion about weddings in other countries, then got completely off topic and started discussing our favorite TV shows and anime, and drawing. I showed Lilianna my sketch book. She really likes my artwork. After that little diversion from our planned program, we played a game where we were given pictures of scenes that Lilianna had found on the internet, and we had to write a short story or description based on what we saw. That was fun, except I got a little carried away and started writing a full-fledged story for my picture before I snapped back to reality. Man, I really need to start on that serial novel so I can scratch this writing itch.

I stayed after classes with a bunch of my friends to attend the after-school Conversation Club, and that was certainly a rewarding experience. Quite simply, we were given a theme, that being a local teachers’ strike that was going on, and we talked about it and discussed it for an hour. We had a great talk, but it was also a little upsetting as we learned about what the teachers here have to deal with. Not only do they receive very little pay and vacation time, but they also have to teach classes of up to 48 students at a time. I hope that the government does something about this soon, because these terrible conditions aren’t just hurting the teachers, they’re hurting the students because the teachers are unable to teach them.

Morelia, Ernesto, and their son, Julio, had to leave early for a concert, so we had dinner early that night. Morelia made us spaghetti and her famous asparagus soup (it sounds weird, but it is GOOD) for dinner, and after my housemates and I finished, we retired to our respective rooms for the rest of the night, where we eventually crashed sometime around 10.

Well, that’s another night down. Until next time, God bless and stay well!



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