What do you need to know to get your bearings in Chile? This is the first in a series of posts on the basics of getting acquainted with everyday aspects of life in Chile… in other words “Cachando Chile 101.”
I don’t get a lot of visitors from “back home.”
I have to admit—we really aren’t kidding when we say that Chile is at the ends of the Earth! But I am very happy to report that my best friend from grad school, Kathleen Skoczen (now Chair of the Anthropology Dept at Southern Connecticut University) is here for research (and pleasure), and I’m doing my best to bring her up to speed on the do’s and don’t of getting around. It’s not the Spanish that will get her, but rather Chile’s particular quirks.
The following is something of a fast-track Intro to Chile, with some very basic yet vital information about how to get started in Chile, from the airport to your door to the street…
Posted in Bureaucracy, Everyday Life, Language
Tagged Chile, Chilean money, Chilean Spanish, chilenismos, customs, gamba, greetings, Kathleen Skoczen, Language, luca, PostaWeek2011, SAG, Santiago, visa
And you thought you knew your native language!
Image by Jeep Novak! via Flickr
There are plenty of surprises to be discovered on the road, and one that can have funny (or downright weird) consequences is when we discover that the language we grew up with doesn’t quite work the same way in another region or culture.
Take a motel, for example—a “motor hotel” along the highway…A no-frills and inexpensive place to sleep and get back on the road to your real destination the next day—right?
Well, could be… unless you’re in Chile… Continue reading
Writing the landmark 100th post is a bit of a daunting task. I had intended to post this on December 1, which I had declared Cachando Chile’s 1-year blogiversary, but with all the hoopla over the Alienating Chileans post (which hit and passed the 100 comments mark that day), followed by an enormous amount of real-life events—you know the kind—all those things that get in the way of blogging, but that end up becoming “blog fodder*’ anyway. (*Eileen gets credit for coining this extremely apropos term).
In honor of this landmark, I wanted to look back over my first year of blogging. Continue reading
Posted in Expat living, Foods, Identity, Language * Idioma, Life Style
Tagged blogiversary, Chile, Chilean Spanish, chilenismos, chilensis, completo, customs, Eileen Shea, family, food, Language, popular culture, popular expressions
We made it through August… Let the fiesta begin!
Chileans—especially the older ones—have a thing about August, a kind of a wary-scary dread accompanied by the increasing mantra-like use of the expression “si pasamos agosto…” (if we get through August), Continue reading
Posted in Health, Language * Idioma, Life Style
Tagged Agosto, Chile, Chilean Spanish, chilenismos, chilensis, death, dichos, Health, idioma, Language, popular culture, popular expressions, slang
Call it Spanglish, call it Spangli-shilean, call it Chilensis–what it is is the Spanish–excuse me–Castellano (I stand corrected!) that you hear on urban streets every day. It’s fast and fun and full of idiomatic expressions that no non-native-Chilensis-speaker could ever figure out on their own. I never dreamed that the recent post on the Rooster from the Glue would receive all the attention it has (see for yourself: Gringas die Laughing!), and I’ve been thrilled by all the response and contributions to the Glossary (which is going to take a while to get updated–now you know what I’LL be doing this weekend!)
Annje of (Annje Unabashed) is a frequent reader of Cachando Chile and she sent me her hilarious version of a little bad translation fun: Continue reading
Spanglish is a funny language. Spend enough time here in Chile and you end up pretty fluent in the Chilean variant, which I call Spangli-shilean!! (Get it?) See? Right there you need to be on the inside track to cachar la onda…
At our most recent Chilespouses dinner, our resident comedian Eileen Shea had the Spanglishilean speakers roaring with laughter—and many of the newcomers scratching their heads—with a story about a guy from work. Continue reading
Posted in Family * Familia, Language * Idioma
Tagged Chile, Chilean Spanish, chilenismos, chilensis, cultura popular, Eileen Shea, Language, popular culture, popular expressions, slang, Spanglish