On Fridays school finishes at 1.30pm, and they don’t have lunch at the school, so we got invited to Blanca’s house for lunch, she only decided to invite us like an hour before, so I already felt kinda like we were intruding. She’s a “teacher” at the school, but she doesn’t teach, she kinda takes disruptive kids out of lessons, and kids with learning disabilities to play games and things. She introduced herself to us on Wednesday with a big hug saying “Hi girls, I’m Blanca, and I’m crazy!”.
So we’d arranged to go to hers for lunch in Temuco where she lives, however, the VERY protective deputy head Bernada was concerned about us staying alone in the boarding house for the whole weekend. She invited Blanca into her office with us, and didn’t like ask her in private if it was okay… but she more or less told her that we had to stay the night at hers in Temuco. She said it wasn’t a problem, but I felt so bad, like intruding on her house etc. So we had to run back to the boarding house, get some jarmas etc and then off to Temuco we went. In the car she was explaining how she has 3 grown up kids, etc etc.
We got there for lunch and her kids are like 18, 19 and 21 i think, all go to uni which is literally 4 mins walk – lucky things! Her house was really kinda small and not cramped, but I don’t know how to describe it. It was cute nevertheless. She said how her oldest had agreed (although he might have been told!) that he’d stay at his gf’s house and we could have his room whenever we came over. She was also saying how that we can share her house, and can stay whenever, it doesn’t matter. she said that we can walk around in pjarmas, do what we like, she doesn’t care.
For lunch, there was a massive mountain of mashed potato, and 2 fried eggs. Which was plenty enough! then came a massive bowl of mussels, and potatoes, and a bit of chicken and more shelled fish things. They were tasty, but I was so full. Then we went into Temuco centre to meet Karina, the English teacher who would help us registering our visa. We spent the afternoon with Karina looking around the Mapuche market and seeing all these things, she did the whole “these are international visitors, can you tell them about Mapuche.. etc etc” and we learnt like the uses of different horns, and bits of metal… also, they dye scarves and wool with leaves to make it green.
So we didn’t really buy anything in Temuco on Saturday, we also got shown around the mall, it could easily have been an American Mall, it’s huge! with like a supermarket, nice restaurant, and a food court, mcdonalds, kfc etc. Then there’s like nice clothes shops, and a massive arcade, with bumper cars, a cinema, dancemats, pool, a childrens like ride, allsorts. it was great, and we only seen 2/3 floors.
We went back to Blanca’s house, and the action just didn’t stop. She made her daughter invite her friends over to meet us, so we could make friends. But they were all couples, lol. We went to the corner shop, bought beer and rum and coke, which is really popular here…. I didn’t like it anyway. We played uno, and yknow that game where say the topic is countries, and each person around the circle has to name a different one. It was fun, and nice of her to invite her friends, but I was so tired, I jst wanted to sleep, but it would’ve been rude to go to bed. One said I looked tired about 2am, and told me to go to bed, I was like yayyy!
Then in the morning we went shopping with Blanca and she is such an erratic shopper, I can’t even describe it. She just randomnly walked around, spent ages looking at say shampoo, then didn’t buy any. We had a trolley full of things and food but when we got to the till she suddenly realised that she didn’t want washing powder, or bananas, or the biscuits and left them all on the end of the counter. Then after we had eaten there was the arrangements for us going home, cos we had to go to church on Sunday. She said we could stay another night, but I didn’t want to. We persuaded her to let us catch a bus from Temuco at 7pm and go back to Chol-Chol for the night. But it wasn’t that simple. We had to be escorted to the bus stop by her eldest son, and in Chol-Chol, the deputy head Bernada would be waiting for us. Except, it was dark, and there’s a sign at each end of chol-chol saying “welcome to chol-chol etc” and I saw it and was like oooh we need to get off…. turns out we got off at the opposite end, and we saw the bus like disappearing into the darkness. We walked back in like 15mins, not a problem but we were thinking about Bernada waiting in the cold for us, worrying. So I text Karina, who called Bernada, who came to the boarding house with a sweet custard pie, tea and a big hug. we were in the bedroom with her, and she was looking at my pictures, pointing to each of my uncles, asking if he was my dad lol. Then she burst into prayer!
Anyway, we thought we’d never be able to be on our own, but eventually we managed it.