Monday, October 21, 2013

Saturday, October 19

Today I had to wake up early to shower and get ready to go to Techo Para Chile. I left Katie sleeping in my house when Juandi came to pick me up at 10. We went to Techo headquarters to find that there were only about 8 volunteers coming today instead of the usual 20 or so. My friend Jose came today for the first time. We went to the camp and went to get the kids, but almost all of them were sick or out somewhere and couldn’t come. It was a super lazy day with almost no volunteers and almost no kids. Jose and I were playing soccer with a few kids when one of them fell and started crying, so I went with him back to his house to make sure he was OK. His little cousin was playing outside the house with a water gun, and when he saw me, he immediately squirted me in the face. It was really high pressure and it hurt my eye a lot and got me completely soaked. His parents came out and offered me a towel, and then we got into a really long conversation. They were super sweet and asked me a lot about my exchange process. I found it so interesting to talk to these people who have literally nothing, but seem so normal and exactly like anyone else I’ve met here. They invited me into their house, and we sat around the table and talked for a while about everything from how I’m doing in school here to how much they make in their jobs here (about $400 a month in a family of 6). It was a little awkward for me knowing how different our backgrounds are, but I also got along with them really well, and I was really glad to have had the opportunity to meet such a different class of people from the ones I am used to. After we left Techo, Jose and I took the micro back to Rancagua, and we walked around for a while and he gave me a tour of his school. Then my dad came and picked me up. I went home and ate lunch, and then my mom came home and took me, Maxi, and Monse to my friend Joaquin’s birthday party (they came because my mom was helping his mom cook and she didn’t want to leave them home alone). Maxi, Joaquin, Lila, and I went on a walk through the fields (he lives in the country and has acres and acres of farmland behind his house), and then we went back to the house for a while and played GTA.
Then Pelao came over and he and Joaquin rode motorcycles while Joaquin’s sister followed them in a pickup truck with Lila and me standing in the back. Riding over the bumpy dirt roads was like being in a roller coaster, and we kept falling all over the bed of the truck and got completely covered in dirt. When we got home, Chichi, Matias, Panchi, and Cristobal were waiting there. We all sat around and talked for a while. I really like Chichi and Matias, but I’d never talked to Panchi before even though he is in my class, and I’d never met Cristobal before because he dropped out of school to be homeschooled before I arrived. I was pleasantly surprised that they were both really nice and super funny. They are good friends of Juandi’s, and they spent basically the whole night trying to convince me that I would be so lucky to date him. It doesn’t even bother me that people make fun of me still for going to the movie theater with him. I guess I have more self confidence now or something, but I really don’t mind being made fun of, so I just laughed and encouraged them to keep telling me great characteristics of Juandi’s. Around 1:00, my family went home. We gave Panchi a ride, and we actually had a conversation in the car for the first time (the ride is about 40 minutes). I get along well with him, and I’m glad I finally got to meet him. Like I’ve said, it’s a lot easier to meet people outside of school.

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