On Saturday, I went to a soccer tournament for the school that my host sister Andrea and brother Pablo go to. Their school had a separate sports ground, with a pool, field, stands and cafeteria. It wasn't that exciting, but I spent a good bit of the time helping Andrea make the fire for the barbeque, which took a bit of effort! The fire kept going out.
That night, although I wasn't too sure if I was going to enjoy myself or not, I was invited to go to a carrete (little party) with Andrea and her boyfriend Rafa. It wasn't what I would call a little party, there were about 15 or so people there, but it was crazy fun! Although I go to a different school from the others, all the people there were really nice to me. Chilean parties are great.
Unlike in New Zealand, where it is normal to bring your own drink, for only you to drink, in Chile, they put forward some money, and someone goes and buys drinks for everyone, and some of the friends were bartenders/DJ's for the night. I don't drink alcohol, but was perfectly content with my class of lemonade. There were a few others that didn't drink as well.
So what sort of things do you do at parties here? There was music, reggaeton and cumbia. At this party, we didn't dance much, but for one of the songs, a Metallica song, all of the guys were absolutely hilarious because they did what I would call a 'fake' fight - they were running around pretending to fight each other, but it was so funny to watch. There are also the typical party songs, which everyone sings along to. Two of the guys had guitars, and played on them also, and after we sung happy birthday to the birthday boy, they played another song, and everyone sung along to it, which sounds cheesy but it wasn't, there was a great sense of friendship and fun. People also played cards, and simply talked. (And smoked). I found it a lot easier to communicate at this party than at my first one, and spent all the night talking in Spanish.
Some of us at the carrete
On Sunday, a friend from school, Emily, invited me to her house for lunch. I had met her family before, and while they aren't rich in money, they are one of the nicest, most hospitable families I have ever met. Emily tried to teach me to play guitar, which I have decided is not my forte, then we had Chinese for lunch (which her mum cooked herself, it was delicious!), and her younger brother told us hilarious stories, he is the kind of person that tells stories and everyone at the table is in fits of laughter - and he's only seven! His expression was so funny. After lunch I played Jenka (Tumbling Towers) with her brother and dad while Emily got ready for church, then thanked her mum for lunch as was dropped of at home.
Because I wasn't the best last week, I decided this week that I would make a goal to put more effort into interacting with my class friends, so on Monday I came to school ready to come out of my shell a bit more, and it's true when they say, the more you give, the more you get. So I had a really good day at school on Monday.
Unfortunately, today, at about 1pm, in my Civics class, I noticed something wasn't right when I could only see half the Civics teacher's head. I started having trouble reading, and seeing - it was like I was looking at something, but parts of it were missing. This, I realised with fear, was a sign I was about to get a migraine. And sure enough, after half an hour I'd started to feel dizzy and the pain on the left side of my forehead had increased. I found my host sister Valeria in the cafeteria and she took me to the inspector, and it was really difficult trying to explain what was wrong, because somehow my Spanish wasn't funcioning either, and she was asking if I had eaten something funny, if I was getting a cold, and I just wanted to tell her that I don't get migraines from anything, the only other two that I have had, have just happened. After I had a panadol, I went back to the cafeteria, but I just felt worse so went to the office, where Valeria tried to get hold of someone to give me permission to leave the school. I ended up leaving with her at 3.15pm, when her classes finished, after my host dad spoke to the school. We went home in a colectivo, and I got into my pajamas and went straight to bed. The thing is, with a migraine, I can't read or do anything, even sleep, so I get really bored, which makes time pass slower. I think I did sleep however, luckily.
I really love the kindness and caring ness (sorry if that's not a word, my English is getting worser and worser) of the Chilean people though. While I was sitting, dazed out on the sofa in the office, Emily was stroking my hair and keeping me company, and my friends Eileen and Nicole somehow managed to get out of physics to come and sit with my for a bit. My English teacher also asked what was wrong, and my Biology teacher checked my glands and my throat and diagnosed me with the flu, then said I would have to have an injection - and in Chile, they give you injections, not in your arm, but in your buttock. So I'm glad I don't have the flu!
I'm feeling much better now, and I'm going to get an early night tonight. I can't believe I've been here for nearly two months now!