With my time here dwindling away, I thought it was time to write a new one! Keep in mind that
this list is for people back home and not for you Santagüinos who are reading this, because most
of these things are things you & I learned many moons ago. Without further ado:
Ten Things I Bet You Didn't Know About Santiago Part II
2. Nobody uses dryers. After washing your laundry, you hang it outside on a clothesline. This was awkward when I lived in my homestay the first month and my underwear hung outside of my host brother's window, but it's all good now that Rachel & I have our own private balcony :)
3. An overwhelming majority of movies at the movie theaters here are American films which are played in English and have Spanish subtitles. You actually have to go out of your way to find movie theaters that play Chilean movies. I never realized how prominent the American film industry is all around the world. If a movie is popular enough, like Harry Potter or something, it may be dubbed in Spanish. This strikes me as odd, since most of the Americans I know refuse to watch movies with subtitles and/or in different languages. What an arrogant country we are.
4. According to a Chilean friend, even though Christmas is in the summer (when it is over 100°) they still celebrate the holiday with candycanes and fir trees and snowy decorations. Crazy, huh?! I thought it might be a beach party.
5. Girls in K-12 are not allowed to wear makeup to school. No wonder makeup seems less prominent here, even among college students! They don't need it though -- the girls here are seriously so naturally beautiful.
6. People here don't like warm sweets. This came as a big shock to me, because I bake a lot and I know from experience that most Americans love their pastries right out of the oven, all gooey and melty and delicious. For example, I made peanut butter oatmeal chocolate chip cookies one day for a friend's BBQ and the first batch of cookies was gone before the second batch came out of the oven!!! Keep in mind, it takes cookies about 10-12 minutes to bake... But the Chileans that I live with look at me like a nutcase every time I try to feed them a warm cookie or cake. "We like our cake cold," explained my landlord. Yeesh.
10. I have noticed that people here pronounce the sound "ch" differently. For example, some people say CHile while others say TZile, as though the "ch" has been replaced with "tz". You can also hear this when people use the common phrase, "Cachais?" (which means, "do you understand me?"). Some people say caCHais and other say caTZais. Isn't that weird??? I have heard from several sources that the difference in pronunciation depends on the person's social class. This makes sense to me, because I always hear the TZ pronunciation while I am at school, which is the mecca for upper-class Chileans (or cuicos as they are known as here.)
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