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  • Writer's picturestrykerk2

Fun at the zoo!

Hola people!

Hope you all had a lovely week, I know I did! I cannot believe we only have 4 more weeks of school with the kids before they leave for summer vacation!

This week we had a class bake sale in efforts to raise money for Teletón. Teletón is a huge organization here in Chile that raises money to provide care for children with disabilities. The fundraising seems to be an annual thing where the whole country works to raise money. Families that qualify receive free care for their child. Our bake sale went really well –we raised about $70 USD. It’s a little bit comical though because there seems to be a bake sale happening every day at school. The bake sales are held during our first recess. Kids bring in money and swarm your tables. It kind of felt like a Friday night at a busy bar, where everyone is trying to get the bartender’s attention.

This week I also started my new Spanish classes. My schedule didn’t coordinate with my previous Spanish professor’s schedule and I wasn’t all too impressed with her. I am so pleased with my new professor and her style of teaching. I have already learned so much from her and I am happy I made the switch to a new professor.

At school, we began our final unit on expressing ourselves. On Friday, we watched the new movie Inside Out, which is such a good movie! We also played different songs and asked the kids to tell us what emotion the song evokes for them. This unit came at the perfect time, because we’ve been dealing with several bullying issues in class. Nothing major, but it definitely needed to be addressed.

^^ Using QR codes and ipads

This weekend I tried to lay low a bit as I started to feel under the weather on Friday. After getting a lot of much needed rest, I spent the afternoon on Saturday walking around the city. I walked through the Parque de Esulturas, or the park of statues. The park was sprinkled with several unique and interesting statues and pieces of art. I also walked to a local teashop 2 blocks away from my apartment. As a tea-fanatic, I’m in love with the place! I even bought some loose-leaf tea to take home. I asked the waitress if they carried Chilean tea. She told me that Chile only has one type of tea and it is very new and from the South.

^^ Definitely my new spot!

^^ Theres that beautiful river ;P

^^ Is it me or does that statue have a butt?

Definitely a butt.

On Sunday, I decided to check out the Zoológico Nacional de Chile, or The National Zoo. I will start by saying that I am very conflicted about zoos. I don’t believe these types of animals should be in captivity and put on display for our pleasure. If the animals are held in captivity, it should be for rehabilitation purposes and they should be given the best care, habitat and overall quality of life possible.

To enter the zoo, it only cost me about 5$ USD. I immediately went to see the elephants because I’m a huge elephant lover. I was sad to see their enclosure was very small, and they had no toys like balls or big pools. I walked around the zoo for a bit, checking out all of the animals. I loved watching the monkeys because they’re always so entertaining. I especially enjoyed two of the chimpanzees swinging back and fourth on a tire swing. I was also amused to find their names were Judy and Gombe. If I ever have a monkey, I will definitely name her Judy.

^^Hello there!

It was interesting to see some Chilean animals at the zoo. There were animals that I have never seen before like the Pudu (an endangered animal in Chile). I was quite amused to find a seagull on display. There were also people pushing and shoving to get pictures of the swan exhibit.

All in all, I absolutely loved seeing the exotic animals that the zoo has to offer. I got some great pictures. That being said, do I think it was worth it? No. There were several alarming aspects about this zoo. Several of the animals didn’t appear to be healthy, the elephant had a big cut on his ear, the parrot had lost all of his feathers on his stomach, and the penguins were very skinny. Perhaps the most depressing thing about national zoo was the size of the enclosures. I’d read online that people were upset with how small the cages were, especially the lion and tiger cages and I definitely agree. I don’t think any of the animals had proportionate enclosures.

^^ The size of the tiger exhibit...

^^The size of the penguin exhibit

As a result, I will not return back to this zoo, and I will encourage others not to visit. I also donated $50 USD to The Wildlife Conservation Network –my favorite animal charity. They have excellent wildlife conservation programs; I encourage you to check them out.

I’m also excited to announce that my flights are officially booked and I am home-bound for 3 weeks in January/February. Mark your calendars folks, I’ll be arriving home January 21 –February 15. Once I arrive to the states, I will put my cell phone chip back in, so I will have the same phone number! Can’t wait to see everyone!!

Laughable Moments:

  • My students often think the “f” sound and the “th” are the same. They say things like, “Miss, my thinger hurts!”

  • Sometimes when my Chilean co-workers speak English, their accent is a bit thick. One of them said “how did their attitude affect others” , but all I heard was “how did their attitude affect otters”.

  • I smiled at a homeless man walking to work one day, he then stood up in front of me and gave me the scariest toothless smile I’d ever seen. Maybe I’ll refrain from smiling at homeless people for a while…

  • SO CRAZY: I was at a bar with a friend having a drink and the girl sitting behind him was wearing a SOUTHERN CONNECTICUT sweatshirt!!!!!

  • A local told me, “I know where CT is! It’s near Vermont in Monopoly!”

  • I woke up around 4am this week to an earthquake and all I kept thinking was “please don’t be a big one, I don’t want to get out of bed!!”

^^ Stopped to visit Juan Pablo at work.

^^ Street vendor selling rabbit puppets?

^^ I swear, people call each other up here and ask "Hey, do you want to go to the park to make out?"

^^ The above collage demonstrates how my kids spell "vacations". Clearly, we need to review.

^^Gotta love those English Language Learners

^^I'm so overwhelmed by the amount of Christmas decorations already taking over the stores

^^ Just a pigeon getting some shopping done!

^^Free the leash kids! (Except sometimes I wish some of my first-graders had these backpacks)

^^ I FREAKED when I stumbled upon 100 Montaditos!! Only my Barcelona roommates will understand my excitement. I am SO pumped they have one in Chile!

^^ I bought a shirt with a tiny pineapple in the pocket!

^^ I bought myself these beautiful flowers. Why? Why not?!

"So you plant your own garden, and decorate your own soul, instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers."

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