Sunday, August 30, 2009

---> Aniversario

Have you ever passed an onion on to another person using only your mouth? Heard of competitions 'Mr Legs', 'Miss Butt' or 'Sexy Dance?' Seen a game of soccer being played on dirt in a dry river bed? I can proudly say that I have!

Over the past week was the school anniversary. Every school in Chile has an anniversary, and it's a week full of activities for the students. In the mornings we has classes, and in the afternoons are the activities. It was a competition between 4 aliances, the 60's (green), 70's (red), 80's (black) and the 90's (white). My class, plus two more classes, made up the aliance of the 90's. 

On Monday we had the 'show'. Each aliance had to present, well, a show, using music from the decade, and it had to be 10 minutes long. Each dance was really really good. The 70's won, but I thought our 90's show with the Spice Girls and Backstreet Boys was pretty cool. After the shows, they had competitions for things like Gala Couple, Beach Couple, Miss and Mr Cake (Butt), Miss and Mr Legs, Strange Couple, and impersonations. The competitions were really interesting to watch, although I was a bit shocked by the promiscuity of some of the dances, especially with the teachers watching.

One of the dances

During the week were soccer games, the boys' soccer game was played on the dry Copiapó river bed, and the girls' on the the basketball courts in the school. People went down to support the teams, with drums and balloons of the colour of the aliance. There were competitions for human tables, passing an onion from person to person using only the mouth, passing water back in a line while sitting down to fill up a bucket.

The onion competition

They had a dancing competition, and each aliance danced to some songs of the era. The 90's dance won that one - I helped a bit with the choreography of the YMCA song by The Village People. The guys in the dance wore leather jackets and helmets and looked really good in their costumes, the Backstreet Boys part they had jeans and singlet tops. It was a really polished dance, opposed to some of the others.

Supporting the aliance

Although supposedly we had classes in the morning, everyone was practicing the dances and preparing things for the competitions, so we didn't actually do a lot of school work that week. One of the most fun 'classes' was with a few people from 3ºA who were sellotaping everything to everything. Good times!

The anniversary also was a chance to hang out with different people, because school was treated as very optional that week by some of my friends. I helped backstage for the show and the dances, straightening hair and gossiping during class with the people that did come to school, making videos at lunchtime with my friend Mauro and taking photos with other friends.

Soccer game in the riverbed

The anniversary officially finishes with a prizegiving ceremony, not only the winners from the aliances but also to award the students with the highest grades and presend student acheivements. There was a special assembley in formal uniform on Friday for this. Then after, on Friday night, was another ceremony, to crown the Queen and King, and the Fiesta Gala, which is basically a social but with formal clothes. Starting at 11pm and going until 2am on Saturday morning!

Host sister and I before the Fiesta Gala

I loved how the aliances had not only colours, but decades, it really made the dances and shows really cool, for the 60's Show, they had the Man on the Moon. There were lipsynchs to Blondie for the 70's, Britney Spears for the 90's and unfortunately I can't remember the rest! The anniversary is also all organised by the students, the week before my class voted on a Queen, who acts as a house captain and organises everyone. The ambient in the school was very relaxed, the teachers seemed a lot cooler and the students friendlier than normal, although there was a very competitive attitude out there. It was a good week to complete my 6 month anniversary of being in Chile too.

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