Sorry for the radio silence lately, my classes have been piling me with work. Yesterday I had a test in my Study of the Chilean Social Reality class and handed in a 12 page paper on El Cantar de Mío Cid for my Spanish Literature I class. The paper especially was hard work, especially because the assistant professor, who told me she would be happy to help me with any questions, did not answer any of the four emails that I sent over the last two weeks until half an hour before the paper was due.
At that point it was too late to make the formatting adjustments she recommended, but when I asked the professor he waved away my concern, saying that he really only cares about the content and he would be grading it anyway.
Today I got my first exam back! It was for my Science and Religion class at the Universidad de Chile. The full title of the course is Science and Religion: Thanks to God We’re Athiests. But I’ve looked through the syllabus and it doesn’t seem like we will be covering atheism at all. I’ve been given the ol’ bait-n-switch!
The exam was on our first unit, natural theology. This is the theory that because of original sin, humans can never again have a clear knowledge of God. So God gave humans science to study his Creation, and through this they can understand more about God. We read some interesting texts from Copernicus, some Genesis, and some medieval theologists.
In Chile grades are on a number scale from 1 to 7. The passing grade is 4.0, and a 5.0 is the average grade for people to be happy with, like a B- in the American system.
So my score. Drum roll please, Mr. Costanza…
Yeay! I am very excited about this! It seems like I’m off to a good start, I just hope I didn’t peak too soon!
My next post is going to be about my trip to Atacama, a desert region of Chile. We will be there from Thursday until Sunday and I am super excited! Hasta Luego!
Not a ton left to do in terms of preparations except to wait. I have a countdown to when my flight leaves Boston on my phone that tells me to the second how much waiting there is left. I fluctuate between sheer terror and excitement. This is going to be such an amazing experience, but I’ve never lived outside of the country before, I’ve never been away from my family and fiancee this long, and I’ve never lived in a city. I think a large part of my anxiety is because I really don’t know what to expect. I don’t know what my host family will be like, I don’t know what my living arrangements will look like, I don’t know what classes I’ll be taking or how hard they will be. So much unknown! But I am also excited for the challenge, the novelty, the excitement, and the experience. Logically I know I’ll be okay, but could someone tell my subconscious?
I went to my local Sprint store to talk to the folks there about the possibility of getting my iPhone 4s unlocked so I could put a Chilean sim card in it when I got to Santiago. If I just took my current phone, every time I wanted to tell my host family I would be late for dinner, it would be like calling Chile from the United States. Muy caro! (Very expensive). Unfortunately unlocking is against company policy and would void the warranty as well as the insurance plan I purchased, so I won’t be doing that. They recommended instead I just put my phone in airplane mode or disable the text and call features while I’m there, essentially turning my phone into an iPod Touch, and getting a prepaid flip phone down there, which I will do.
My typhoid pills are almost done, I just have one dose left. Some people would prefer just to have the one needle and not have to mess around with pills that have to be taken 2 hours after eating and 1 hour before, with a glass of water, every other day. I say Boo Needles! They are nasty poky things that make me anxious and sweaty. No thank you!
Congratulations! You have been accepted to study abroad at Chilean Universities Program, Santiago,
Semester 1 2013through the Institute for Study Abroad, Butler University (IFSA-Butler).”
I suppose my study abroad adventure begins now! I got this email while eating Chinese food with Donny (my fiancee) and Davy (his uncle). I jumped up and screamed and scared both of them. I’ve already sent in the required forms, so my next feat is going to be getting my student visa from the Chilean embassy. ¡Deseame buena suerte!