Thursday, December 10, 2009

Jingle Bells

**Much more smiling involved if actually sung**
Dashing through the sand
In a flip-flop sort of way
Over the couples we step
Laughing all the way
In the Southern Hemisphere
Christmas lights displayed
What fun it is to rush and pack
into the micro bus.

Jingle Bells
Jingle Bells
Jingle Chilean style
Hot and humid
Are the words
During my last month here
Jingle Bells
Jingle Bells
Jingle Chilean style
Waiting for Santa Clause
On the ocean shores.

About two months ago
This Christmas-ness began
Crazy street vendors
shrieking here and there,
“Oh, buy your kid a gift!”
This commercialism
Simply does not change
Not even culturally.


So, dashing through the sand
I’m loving my last month!!
Yet staying focused
On the true reason
Because Christmas indeed
Is about something more
So continue passing on
the JOY, the PEACE, and the LOVE



Sunday, December 6, 2009

Chilean Bells

Chilean Weddings, also known as the time of your life. Yesterday, I was able to attend my first Chilean wedding, a cousin of my host family here. Finally, check mark for attending an Hispanic wedding. Oh, wait did I say "wedding"? By golly, by all means, I meant PARTY. Preparation for this event was quite a bit of drama for my taste. Although I like to dress nicely and elegantly (sometimes), I am really simplistic in the drama-mama realm. Wedding ceremonies tend to be ultra-formal here. Most woman were dressed in categories we would consider bride maid's dresses, prom dresses, or cocktail dresses. Anywho, my "date" (my host brother), other members of the family, and I arrived in Santiago for the wedding ceremony, where the groom greeted us outside the church's doors, a tradition held here in Chile. The invitations said the service started at 8:00pm, but we arrived at 8:15pm -- I wasn't too worried because we are on Chilean time here, don't cha know? The service didn't start until 9 (at night keep it mind). We all stood up when the groom entered from the outdoors with his mother accompanying him. He walks to the alter to wait for his beautiful bride, while the audience also awaits anxiously. She makes her triumphal entrance from a vehicle that drives her to the entrance; everyone starts chitterchattering about the dress or the groom's reaction. The bride and groom take their places, while the parents of the groom and bride take their respective chairs on the stage with them (I liked this part for the sake and honoring of the parents). Everything else about the ceremony was similar. One aspect I especially enjoyed was the blessing of the rings. The priest took the rings and prayed over them, really precious to me. If I don't become a nun, don't be surprised if I integrate this into my wedding. The groom and bride quickly kissed and the ceremony ended about 10pm, lasting only about an hour. DANG, when the pastor says, "You may now kiss the bride", my husband better take advantage of that statement. :)

Then, we drove to a separate banquet hall for the reception, and the PARTY commenced. For thirty minutes, 10 different types of samples were whirled around us, Chilean wine flowing, and random fruity drinks. The most interesting appetizer I tried was straight up octopus, cooked but with no dressing. Not a favorite. A bit too chewy and tasteless for Miss Dudley. Then at about 11:30pm we entered into the official dining part, to be served appetizers and dinner all around midnight. Buffet of desserts around 1am. Then, ladies and gents, began the dancing session from 1am until 5am I do believe. I made Sebastian, my date for the night, dance with me without ceasing -- including pop, merengue, salsa, cumbia, 80s, disco... etc. Near the end, they were handing out masks, glow sticks, crazy headbands, and noisemakers. It was a lovely glorious sight to see people over the age of 40 breaking out their dance moves, furthermore past midnight. I second this motion to be installed in the USA. Do I have a second?

From 8:00pm until 6am, therefore, I had the time of my life at my first Chilean wedding.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

a d L d

Thank you Straten. Perfect.

Kerrie Isabel has come to the conclusion that her English is no longer equal to that of a native English speaker. Please forgive any misunderstandings you might encounter while engaging in any form of communication with her. She is deeply sorry and is trying her best to correct the issue at hand. Unfortunately, it appears the damage caused by learning a second language might be irreversible.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Well, hello there! So nice to see you again. You’re lookin’ mighty fine. :) This past week my classes all ended officially. Oh and guess what! I didn't flunk out of dance class. Whoot whoot (that's the celebratory noise). I actually passed with a solid "A." Secretly, just between you and me, I think she gave that to me because of my ridiculous enthusiasm for her class. The other grades are still shaping up, TBD.

I cannot believe this is my last month here in CHILE; almost 5 months have already passed. December 31st is approaching rapidly, and my sentiments are all in a swirl! AGRIDULCE is the word, meaning bittersweet. I am tickled to see family and friends again, and yet part of my heart will remain here in Chile, amongst such a beautiful culture and language. Agridulce.
Bueno, I'm off to go experiment with some lemons, vanilla, and brown sugar -- something along the lines of lemonade. I'm dreaming of a spicy hot Christmas here in Chile…