Mis primeros días en Chile!

Hola a todos!

I’m currently in bed in Chile writing this and thinking about how Chile was definitely a great pick for me because it’s very normal to sleep in until about 9 or 10, and that custom suits my lazy teenage self very much. Mañana!

Travelling over to Chile was quite the journey. All of the exchange students travelling from Sydney to South America on the 17th we’re delayed 24hrs due to weather, so we all started off our exchanges at a hotel near the airport, playing cards and trying not to be weirded out by some of the hotel decor (it was a bunch of brightly coloured dog statues, not sure how to feel about that). But, we made it onto the plane a day late on the 18th, and it wasn’t long until we all arrived in Santiago de Chile, and I said goodbye to the Brazilian kids. The best part of the plane ride for me was seeing the Andes mountains as we flew into Santiago. I started crying because that’s when I had my ‘this is real’ moment about my exchange, and I knew I was going to love it.

My host family picked me up from the airport, and on we went to Peñalolen. We drove past my school, Colegio Mayor de Peñalolen, and I got a glimpse of some of the amazingly large malls they have here.

left to right (izquierda – derecha): me, Cris, my Host mum Carolina, Cony, Javi, and Abuela Ida (my host dad Víctor Hugo is taking the photo)

I arrived in the morning Santiago time, which for Sydney time meant it felt like 11pm for me, but I didn’t want to succumb to jetlag, so I tried to stay up the whole day.

I went with my host parents and host sister, Cony, to a local produce market (I think it’s called a fair? I only heard the name so I’m not sure how to write it). Everything there was almost double the size we have in Australia, think massive avocados (palta), ginormous watermelons (sundía), the freshest blueberries, strawberries and cherries, and such a variety of beautiful fresh foods. I didn’t take any photos because it’s felt weird to take photos of just something so normal for everyone over here, sorry!

We bought these corn fritters type things that I also forgot the name of, and that’s what we had for lunch. My family here has a bit of a healthy rivalry over what’s best to have with the corn fritters; con tomate o con azúcar? (with tomato or with sugar?). I didn’t want to pick a side so early so I ate it with both.

My host family has a pool and I went swimming in it with my host brother and my little host sister. It’s so refreshing to swim in the heat, and I think it’s an amazing experience to have on my first day in Chile.

My brain wasn’t working very well on the first day I arrived, and my host family often had to tap me to get me to realise they were talking to me and they had to repeat things very slowly and clearly. I feel bad that my Spanish isn’t up to scratch yet, but it’s only been three days. After a good nights sleep however, I’m understanding a lot more and trying to speak more as well. My host family is so patient with me and I feel very lucky to be a part of their family. We first went out yesterday to buy Sticky Notes (they call them postits – everything is very brand orientated here), and my host brother was pointing everything out to me and saying the Spanish word for things and I was repeating it back to him, and he would also give commentary on whether or not the food or product was good, and it was very amusing. We then all went around the house together and I had to name everything I knew, and then they filled in the gaps by putting postits with the Spanish words on all the things I didn’t know. I’ve successfully managed to redecorate their house because you can’t walk into a room without seeing some orange.

I had empanadas for the first time ever here, and I think I found the food I’m going to gain my exchange weight from! I tried the Chilean classic ‘Pino’ empanada, empanada con queso (cheese emapanada), and Neapolitan empanada (basically hawaiian pizza in an empanada, minus the pineapple). My favourite has to be Pino, and I feel like these empanadas need to go mainstream in Australia, because they are very close to pasties and pies, so I think Australians will love them, but also I don’t know how I’m going to survive going back to Australia without them!

Now I’m going to end this VERY long blog post here, as I probably need to get up and get ready for the day as we are going to my host mums sisters cumpleaños today. So, thank you for reading and hope you enjoyed!



By the time you are back in Australia, you’ll be able to make the empanadas from scratch. Looking forward trying one or two or three or…


Very smart not picking a side on the family rivalry yet!

I can definitely relate to that “this is real” moment you had – it came out of nowhere for me too!

Great post – glad to hear you’re already loving it 🙂

Kylie (RYE 2020 Indigo’s mum)

So glad to hear you are having a wonderful time in Chile, Zoe.

Cath Colville

So lovely to hear your first experiences of Chile, Zoe! It sounds amazing already. Have a fabulous year!! xx

Louise Wyatt-Spratt

Hi Zoe

It’s Louise from THS. Just logged on to have a look at what you’ve been up to and am so thrilled that you’re part of a lovely, supportive family. You look great and like you’re having the best time.

School started today with the new Yr 7’s and the seniors – all seemed to go well.

Will try and remember to log on regularly to see what you’re up to.

Continue having fun – adios amigo (sorry)


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *