I made it!

I almost missed my flight. That would happen to me, right? I arrived in Dallas around 1pm and had 8 hours to kill before my flight to Santiago and SOMEHOW I managed to be at the wrong terminal the entire time, only noticing that it was a different letter about 15 minutes before boarding began. Great start.

On the plane, I sat next to a guy who was originally from Chile but had been living in Chicago for the last 8 years. He was SO friendly and helpful, telling me about areas I should visit. He had also done a lot of world traveling so we both shared stories about where we had been. Plane ride was long but the best part was waking up to a sunrise over the Andes. I tried to get a picture through the window but it didn’t turn out very well – I’ll post it when I have a chance.

Once we arrived in Santiago, I found a few other people in the English Open Doors program and went with them through the immigration and custom lines, then we were shuttled over to our hostel. It’s a really cute and colorful place with murals on the walls outside and inside. I’m staying in a room with 2 other girls, and have met people from all over the U.S. plus Australia, Czech Republic, and Malaysia! A few people have been talking about traveling after the program too, so we might do some traveling together… although most of them are only going for a few weeks to 2 months.

We walked down by a shopping area earlier today and bought phones! Luckily there are a decent number of people who are fairly fluent… otherwise I would only have gotten as far as ¨ ¨Necesito un mobile” and not gone into finding the cheapest rates and cost. Then activating the phone was another thing, because the automated messages are in Spanish! But we figured it out, so I officially have a cell phone number that receives calls and texts for free! But just don’t expect responses since I do have to pay for that and it’s really expensive.

Also noticed that there are a lot of stray dogs. Everywhere. In groups. It’s so sad because I just want to go over and pet them but I can’t!!!

Anyways, Spanish lessons, TESL training, and cultural orientiation is tomorrow through Friday, and on Friday we will finally find out our specific locations for our schools and homestays!

I can’t think of anything else to add, but I have to say, I LOVE seeing the Andes mountains in the background of the skyline!!!

Sharing internet cords since the WiFi is down, so I’m off for now.

¡Ciao!

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