Little Tid-Bits From Chile

By Kait Beseda, Chile Fall 2012Image
I appreciate that The US is incredibly capitalist and can never take a moment to catch their breath but I’m beginning to think we take it a bit too far. Wednesday was a nation holiday to celebrate The Virgin Mary. So we didn’t have school. The Virgin Mary? For real?! We would never get away with something like that back home.
The profs here are super chill. We were discussing Chilean holidays in class yesterday with Soraya (my reading and writing prof) and she says, if you need an extended holiday so you can travel just tell your professor. If enough students are going to be missing the class your prof will move the class and push back all of the assignments that are due. SERIOUSLY??? And for that very reason Soraya won’t give us a syllabus. She says that holidays are too frequent, illness spreads like wildfire with exchange students, and she never knows how fast or slow her international students are going to learn. So everything is flexible and just depends on how everyone is feeling about the assignments. I’m in heaven!!
One of the reasons the profs are so chill is because of timing here. Its a big joke that the country runs on Tiempo Chileano (chilean time). I would compare this to Beseda timing. You have to tell everyone in our family to arrive a half hour early or they will show up late. The same thing goes here. Youth group on Fridays starts at 7:00 but things don’t really get started until 7:30 to allow for all of the people that will come late. It drives me CRAZY!!! I am by no means on time to anything in the states, but like everything here, they take being late to an extreme. Its perfectly normal to have students walking into class 15 and 30 minutes late. ?????!!! What? I can’t even imagine! If I was going to be that late for class I wouldn’t even bother showing up. But not here, fashionably late in Chile means arriving early. 

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