Hoy fue mi primero día de escuela. Well okay, not really school, just orientation, but nonetheless it felt good to have something official to do. There are about 25-30 international students attending Viña del Mar this Winter II Semester, with their homes ranging from California, Ohio, Oklahoma, Hawaii, to Romania (I think) and Sweden. Wow!
I took both my written and oral placement exams today, and I felt like I did the best I could have asked for at this point. I actually enjoyed my oral exam because it was mainly me speaking, which is good because I really struggle with the listening and comprehending Spanish (and on top of that, Chileans talk incredibly fast).
I liked today because it felt like I had returned to my Elementary School days. I thought it was really sweet how mi madre gave me the home address and her phone number on a piece of paper before I left the house this morning in case I got lost and needed help. My schedule for Orientation (and I think most Spanish-speaking countries) gives me a couple of hours to go home for lunch, so I walked home with my new friends and even had one join me for lunch at mi casa. It was a fun trip down memory lane to recall walking home from Belmar Elementary and bringing friends along for and after-school snack. But probably the best thing about today was a rekindled determination. I’ve been extremely soft on my Spanish since I’ve been here, and I’ve been talking in English way too much. Today I decided to suck it up and really start pushing myself. I’ve spoiled myself and cheated a lot, but now it’s go time. And thus, the fun begins now.