Sunday, November 11, 2007

Weekend musings

Santiago is dead at the weekend (until 2 am at which point people start tentatively coming out to the bars). The reason Santiago is dead at the weekends is because all the students have gone home on Friday. They go home on Friday because there are no lectures on a Friday. There are no lectures on a Friday because all the students go out on a Thursday and nobody would turn up on Friday morning. They go out on a Thursday because it´s the last day of the week they can all go out together, because they´re all going home for the weekend. They do so because they don't need to go to lectures on a Friday.

Somehow I see a circular argument here and if the professors aren't careful the students will call a moratorium on Thursday lectures too.

In lieu of the fact that there is almost nothing to do here at the weekend (many shops are closed on Saturday, all are shut on Sunday. The gym closes at 1 pm on a Saturday for the whole of the weekend, many cafes are running at half capacity) it means that I have a chance to catch up with reading some research papers and going over the Spanish from the previous week; this week, week one of my Spanish lessons I estimate I have around 250 new words to learn!

A major difference between life here and in China is that coming into the office here at the weekend is a pretty solitary experience. In China the offices were usually just as busy at the weekend as in the day. Given the cafe culture already in place here I'm likely to relocate at the weekends to a place with a bit more going on.

My major success this weekend was that I may have tracked down a Chinese teacher. Santiago has a large number of Chinese shops selling all manner of imported cheap knick-knacks and I've popped into most of them now, chatted with the owners, all of whom seem to be from Zhejiang province, and may finally have a source for a tutor.

I'm also already on the hit-list for being an English tutor but this is definitely out, given that spare time is pretty non-existent.

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For now I'll leave you with a couple of photos taken as we flew into Northern Sichuan and the mountains poked through the cloud line.

IMG_3555
IMG_3551

3 comments:

Donkey Oaty said...

Great snaps Biscuit - the top one looks like a ninja falling into a duvet. Does to me, anyway.

What's the beer like in SDC then?

Anonymous said...

Hi Jon, great pictures! Of course the big difference of being back in (continental) western europe is that there is nothing to do on sundays, except of relaxing ;-)

Jonathan Shock said...

Hi DC,

Your imagination knows no bounds! I see it, but this may be the first ever case of ninjadolia!

The locals brew is rather stronger than I'm used to, having spent the last years drinking very cheap, watered down beer.

Hi anonymous,

Yes, this is something I'm going to have to get used to I think. It may take a while!