Jean Rust is a student at Wichita State University and an ISA Featured Blogger. Jean is currently studying with Veritas Abroad in Valparaíso/Viña del Mar, Chile.
It’s finals time. For everyone, it seems, except for all of us here in Chile. Everyone is talking about the end of the semester, summer plans and a break from the daily grind, but we just hit our mid-point.
Long story short, the Chilean school calendar follows the calendar year. And the seasons here are flip-flopped. So yes, they do get a summer break, and yes, it is fall here right now.
Anyway, we’re at the halfway point. And I don’t know how we got here. Time just… happened. In the States I would say that it flew by, but here time is so different. Time just happens.
Classrooms don’t have clocks. Chileans are consistently late, and no one is on a time crunch. Life happens, and time escapes.
And that’s what happened. Half of my time here is passed, and I only have a little over two months left.
Before I left Kansas, four and a half months seemed like a long time, and it is. But at the same time it’s not enough. I feel like I’m finally starting to feel like I belong here. I’m finally identifying Viña as my current home and Valpo as my other city. I can finally (almost) get around town on the micros. I can finally find what I want in the supermarket. I’ve figured out where I can get the most bang for my buck and the places that are a rip off. I’ve found some good hang out spots and other pockets of beauty.
And now I’m halfway done.
It’s crazy to think how much time has elapsed. Knowing the fluidity of time makes it so much more important to take every opportunity.
I don’t want to waste the second half of my time here. I want to enjoy every second of it.
Reblogged this on The Adventures of Jean and commented:
Another ISA post! More reflections on making it halfway.
I am interested in studying in Chile in the Valp/Vina area and I was wondering if you could answer some of my questions:
1. How are the crime rates in both areas?
2. Which area is better to study in..so far I understand Valparasio is more artsy and Vina del Mar is beachy.. how exactly do they differ?
3. Which school is the better choice Unversidad de Vina de Mar or PUC Valparasio (Pontifical Catholic University of Valparaíso)?
4. For the homestay how was it different in Vina del Mar and Valparasio?
5. As far as the Spanish goes how was the experience?
Overall tell me about your experience with the areas..
I went to school in Valpo and lived in Viña. I absolutely loved it. Viña is more like a modern city, Valpo is more like a cultural/historical place that is wonderful to explore. I went to PUCV. I don’t know much about the school in Viña, but I felt like PUCV had a great international program. And I definitely learned a great deal of Spanish. Before I went, I could read and write Spanish. I finally became comfortable speaking while I was there.