Archive for April, 2010

OK, its time I added another post. I get it.

April 19, 2010

Sorry for my belated posting, it seems like nothing has happened in the past couple weeks yet at the same time too much to write about at one time.  I think I’ll just write a simple summary to start with.

-Finally settling into the grove at work.  I’m on a pretty normal schedule now and slowly learning things.  I’m a mechanical engineer by schooling, but a lot of what I am dealing with is electrical and computer in nature.  So it’s been a little rough learning everything, but thankfully there are a lot of cool people to help me a long the way.  The work site itself is quite an extreme environment, although my two biggest obstacles thus far are the dryness and the food.  The dryness I will get used to, but the food is just abysmal.  My comment last time I was up at the site was something along the lines of how I could cook much better food while backpacking over 2000 miles on the Appalachian Trail.  At least they have trucks here to carry stuff, and the miracle of refrigeration should open new worlds of culinary delight.  Instead, the meat makes us wonder why the local wild donkey herds are mysteriously thinning out, the menus are translated horrendously (tri-colored gun’s and attacked vegtables both in one night!), and the food generally resembles something that a camel vomited after drowning in a cess pit.  The worst part is they ask for suggestions and then ignore anything we throw out there.  If I sound overly bitter, its just because they are getting paid multiple times what it costs me to make food in the States.  Someone somewhere is getting rich off our misery.  Everything else is pretty cool though!

-I finally got settled into an apartment.  This makes me very very happy.  I planned on spending my first week getting everything settled, but instead I got some sort of stomach bug instead.  I’m mostly better now, but I’m amazed I can function despite only having one meal in the past three days. I should develop a ravenous appetite just as I arrive at the work site…at which point I won’t want to eat (…see above).  Oh yeah, the apartment is wonderful.  I got a second floor place so I could jump out the window in case of another earthquake, even though I feel I am mostly over that now.  Still, its got a nice view of the apartment gardens and the next door Austrian consulate is mostly jungle, feels very private.  The metro station is right outside the gate, the office is across the street, and its a relatively quiet neighborhood.  Mostly it’s just nice to get out of a hotel.  As much as I like it here, it’s a little too expensive and I will most likely move when my lease is up in one year.  I figure it would be cool to live in another part of chile, but figuring out transportation to work could be challenging.

-I’m looking out for a car or other means of mechanical transportation.  Of course, nothing normal will do.  Candidates so far include: Citroen 2CV, Volkswagen Bus (still made in Brazil!), Land Rover series III 109, and other various bad ideas.  To top it off, I would like to buy something made in 1987 or older.  This gives me the insane option of driving it back to the States when I am through here and keeping it (must be 25 years old).  Road trip, anyone?

-Best of all, my girlfriend Rebecca came for a visit!  Although it was only one week, it was great to see her again.  I tried as best as I could to play tour guide, but there is only so much I know about this place.  Highlights include: touring downtown Santiago, going on a guided tour of Vailpraiso and Vina del mar (recomended!), hiking up San Cristobal and running into a super nice random Chilean couple, and finally on the last day signing on my apartment!  Hmm…it was a great week, too much to write about here.  Come back soon, Boo!

I think that is about all for now.  Maybe I went overboard on the food, but they could really do better without much more effort.  Adjusting to Santiago is still really rough, it’s incredibly hard to meet people here to hang out with.  I’m hoping things will get better soon.  And I’m taking spanish lessons online, maybe someday I will actually get to take lessons with a real live person!

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