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A gringa on the dance floor
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Date:2009-01-01 19:36
Subject:x-posted in globalannearchy

Things I would like to do in my life:

be a barista in italy
live in seattle
go to grad school
represent someone in immigration court
travel to india
learn portuguese
return to chile
go on long camping trips
help make a documentary
do yoga consistently
remain close with my three best childhood friends
have an active teaching/mentoring role

What about you?

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Date:2007-10-09 14:09

A mi me encanta la musica. La paz. La palta. Mis profesores. Por la tanto, a mi me encanta mi vida.

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Date:2007-09-24 00:10
Subject:Descanse en paz, pablo neruda

"No te amo como si fueras rosa de sal, topacio
o flecha de claveles que propagan el fuego:
te amo como se aman ciertas cosas oscuras,
secretamente, entre la sombra y el alma.

Te amo como la planta que no florece y lleva
dentro de sí, escondida, la luz de aquellas flores,
y gracias a tu amor vive oscuro en mi cuerpo
el apretado aroma que ascendió de la tierra.

Te amo sin saber cómo, ni cuándo, ni de dónde,
te amo directamente sin problemas ni orgullo:
así te amo porque no sé amar de otra manera,

sino así de este modo en que no soy ni eres,
tan cerca que tu mano sobre mi pecho es mía,
tan cerca que se cierran tus ojos con mi sueño." - El poeta

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Date:2007-09-21 23:01

Today we visited a woman's farm collective in the Andes. We ate a huge country breakfast and heard firsthand how globalization basically blows. The women in the collective do what they can not to compete against one another, directly in resistance to the cardinal rule of market capitalism. Instead, they go out of their way to help each other. When someone's sick, another woman will go to the market in her place, etc.
During lunch I was talking to my academic director, Rossana. She's Chilean and all our conversations are in Spanish, which makes them difficult but more intimate. She has two children and I've never heard mention of a father. This is quite normal in Chile - to have three children by three different men, etc. But she told me that she was married for 26 years and her husband passed away five years ago. Now her daughter is always bugging her to find a boyfriend. "But there hasn't been anyone," she said. "Not in Valparaiso, not in Arica." She said that what she had with her husband was rather strong, and not something that she could easily recreate. Anyway, "No hace falta" - she doesn't need anyone else right now.
I was so surprised that she spoke to me candidly about this. I secretly admire her - how overtly motherly she is and yet quietly powerful at the same time - and I never thought she saw me someone to empathize with on this level. I didn't really know how to respond. But I love her and want her to find love, in whatever way would be best.

After the excursion, I went to Yom Kippur services with some girls. I love the Jewish community in Valparaiso. The Rabbi spent time travelling in Cuba (where he became quite the revolutionary), Portugal, and the US. The people all know each other and are rather close knit. Their synagogue is a space in which I no longer feel like a foreigner. Everything about it reminds me of childhood in potomac. Interesting, huh?

Some great things the Rabbi has said:
"Without spontaneity, there can be no romance. And without romance, there is no life."
"What is intimacy? The lack of fear."

LOVE him. Night, kids.

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Date:2007-09-21 22:51
Subject:"I am ignorant of the business world"

I love the prose on this one...so trashy victorian novel.

Hello dear,
With profound respect and humble submission, I beg to state the following few lines for your kind consideration, I hope you will spare some of your valuable minutes to read the following appeal with sympathetic mind. I must confess that it is with great hopes, joy and enthusiasm that I write you this mail which I know and believe by faith that it must surely find you in good condition of health. My name is Jean Martins, I am the only daughter of my late parents Mr.and Mrs D.Martins. My father was a highly reputable business magnet who operated in the capital of Ivory coast during his days.
It is sad to say that he passed away mysteriously in France during one of his business trips abroad on the 12th September 2004. Though his sudden death was linked or rather suspected to have been masterminded by an uncle of mine who travelled with him at that time. But God knows the truth! My mother died when I was just 6yrs old, and since then my father took me so special.
Before the death of my father on September 2004, he called me and informed me that he has the sum of Five Million, Seven Hundred thousand United State Dollars.(USD$5,700,000.00) he deposited in a private Bank here in Abidjan Cote D'Ivoire.. He told me that he deposited the money in my name, and also gave me all the necessary but legal documents regarding to this deposit with the Bank
I am just 23 years old and a university undergraduate and really don't know what to do. Now I want an honest and GOD fearing partner overseas who I can transfer this money with his assistance and after the transaction I will come and reside permanently in your country till such a time that it will be convinient for me to return back home if I so desire. This is because I have suffered a lot of set backs as a result of incessant political crisis here in Ivory coast. The death of my father actually brought sorrow to my life. I also want to invest the fund under your care because I am ignorant of business world.
I am in a sincere desire of your humble assistance in this regards. Your suggestions and ideas will be highly regarded. Now permit me to ask these few questions:
1. Can you honestly help me from your heart?
2. Can I completely trust you?
3. What percentage of the total amount in question will be good for you after the fund has being transfeered to your account and i come over to meet you ?

Please, consider this and get back to me as soon as possible. Immedaitely I confirm your willingness, I will send to you my Picture and also inform you more details involved in this matter.Kind Regards,please reply through my private email above for security reasons,
Miss Jean Martins.

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Date:2007-09-07 17:12

So yesterday some friends and I (one from Colorado and the other the UK), were walking toward the universidad de santa maria so that we could hang out a little before our seminar. Upon reaching the University, we saw that there was a huge protest going on. The students had occupied the university, something that we hadn´t at all expected. But, being good lefty students, we totally joined in the riot. We were clapping and singing; protesting the forthcoming privatization of universities in Valparaiso. The students were blocking traffic on the Avenida España, the main thoroughfare between Valparaiso and Viña Del Mar. The police started spraying water in order to disperse the crowd, but the protest resumed. Five minutes later, the area was covered in tear gas, which if you haven´t experienced it, is incredibly nasty stuff. It gets into your throat, your eyes - some people react worse than others and often collapse. My friends and I had to fight our way inside the university, but the crowd was panicked. People were screaming the Spanish word for tear gas, which I can´t seem to remember. We finally got inside and washed our faces.

We eventually went to the home of La Rossana, a wonderful SIT administrator who gave us tea and cookies (which we couldn´t stop eating) and gave us a place to shower.

The experience really made me wonder what kind of government is more than happy to use tear gas (on its own citizens) after 10 minutes of protest. I think that in Chile, and in most of Latin America, the state sees people as relatively dispensible. Tear gas is fairly mild when all is said and done, but it represents a highly aggressive actor who values efficiency and order (clearing the road) over public well being. Rossana, an active protester in the 70s, told us that she learned all kinds of ways to avoid the effects of the gas, because she´s experienced it so much. The Chilean people are remarkably strong - Isabel Allende often expands on this theme - because they have experienced governments who could give a damn about their social and economic livelihood. They face tear gas and possible brutality one day, and the next they continue the struggle. It´s a process of moving on that I really admire.

After the protest and a debriefing with the program, we all went out for pizza and beer. Later some good strong alcohol in Valpo´s bohemian bario, cerro alegre. Today was lovely, a nice winter fog mixed with three cups of tea. Perfecto.

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Date:2007-09-02 16:33
Subject:xposted in globalannearchy

Pues, hace mucho frio aqui en Valparaiso. Mi espanol esta mejorando, mientras que mi inglis este peor.
My host family is very sweet (Jaime called them ¨adorable¨). Speaking of Jaime, they do. A lot. I think that since he´s sin novia at the moment and I am also soltera, a match is being made. Of course this is spoken about in whispers and hints of whispers spoken in fast Castillian that I can´t understand. But in truth they are one of the best host families I´ve ever encountered. Mainly because they listen. They pay attention and include me in whatever they´re doing.
A is around 60, an accountant who is visibly still much in love with his wife, O. O calls herself a ¨bruja¨ - which in Chilean Spanish translates to ¨type A¨. She´s incredibly affectionate, or carinosa, but sometimes a lot to handle. She asks me a lot of questions about what I´m doing, and why.
Today was my day off from classes and they took me to an Italian bakery in downtown Valparaiso. They proudly told the woman at the counter that ¨this is a student from North America. She likes to cook Italian food, especially pasta.¨ She replied with the obligatory, ¨que bueno¨. But it made me feel special to be thought of in that way.
For lunch we ate pizza, focaccia, and ravioli. O was unsatisfied with the amount I ate and said, ¨La gringa no comio nada¨- or ¨the gringa didn´t eat anything!¨ Here in Chile I am referred to always as ¨La gringa¨ which I´m assured doesn´t carry the same connotations as it does in Mexico. It´s just someone who speaks English. Or so they say.

Afterward we gathered in the town square to watch traditional dancers perform ¨la cueca¨- the national dance. It was pretty cool, although on some level maybe a little cruel to force on children (the principal bailadores). Well, more later, for now there is Isabel Allende to be read.

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Date:2007-09-01 23:11

My English is getting really bad.

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Date:2007-04-29 12:44


Please stop moving to west virginia for a breezy 1.5 hour commute.

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Date:2007-04-26 15:14

Umm...so I might be going to India this January. I officially feel like I'm using up my good travel karma.

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Date:2007-04-18 14:47
Subject:At least we have Ginsburg

Partial Birth Abortion Ban UPHELD
Justice Ginsburg's dissenting opinion
"As Casey comprehended, at stake in cases challenging abortion restrictions is a woman's "control over her [own] destiny." 505 U. S., at 869 (plurality opinion). See also id., at 852 (majority opinion).2 "There was a time, not so long ago," when women were "regarded as the center of home and family life, with attendant special responsibilities that precluded full and independent legal status under the Constitution." Id., at 896-897 (quoting Hoyt v. Florida, 368 U. S. 57, 62 (1961)). Those views, this Court made clear in Casey, "are no longer consistent with our understanding of the family, the individual, or the Constitution." 505 U. S., at 897. Women, it is now acknowledged, have the talent, capacity, and right "to participate equally in the economic and social life of the Nation." Id., at 856. Their ability to realize their full potential, the Court recognized, is intimately connected to "their ability to control their reproductive lives." Ibid. Thus, legal challenges to undue restrictions on abortion procedures do not seek to vindicate some generalized notion of privacy; rather, they center on a woman's autonomy to determine her life's course, and thus to enjoy equal citizenship stature. See, e.g., Siegel, Reasoning from the Body: A Historical Perspective on Abortion Regulation and Questions of Equal Protection, 44 Stan. L. Rev. 261 (1992); Law, Rethinking Sex and the Constitution, 132 U. Pa. L. Rev. 955, 1002-1028 (1984)."

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Date:2007-03-19 13:46

Dear Anne,

On behalf of SIT Study Abroad, I am pleased to offer you admission to
the Fall of 2007 SIT Chile: Culture, Development & Social Justice
program. Congratulations on completing this step towards an
experience that will have a significant impact on your life.

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Date:2007-02-23 13:50

I need advice. Should I get a small, text tatoo on my upper back (shoulders region) that says:

mariposas amarillas

"Mariposas amarillas" means "yellow butterflies" in Spanish. Or if I do get the tatoo, should I get it in English? The phrase was lifted from a Spanish text, and I like Spanish better, but maybe English makes more sense.

Thanks, guys!

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Date:2007-02-14 16:02


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Date:2006-12-13 02:59

I apologize if this does not apply to you. Skip if you are on my friends list.

Stop reading my livejournal and messenging me on aim. My journal will be private from here on out, so that's less of an issue, but the aim stuff has got to stop. I think that you have a problem - you seem to enjoy terrorizing women and I am the wrong woman to mess with. I have a lot of confidence, am a strong feminist, and don't tolerate bullshit.
This is a warning. Leave me alone.

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Date:2006-12-03 22:39

I have a gmail account!

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Date:2006-10-25 16:42


This is the best thing of my life.

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Date:2006-10-18 13:53
Subject:Should I study abroad in Chile next year?

Here's the description:
Examine the political history of Chile in a contemporary cultural context. Gain insights into the forces at play as Chile works to reconcile with its past while moving forward politically, socially, and economically.
Chile’s return to civilian rule after 18 years of military dictatorship has generated international interest. Recent efforts to prosecute former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet have spurred worldwide debate on human rights and social justice, while economic policies and the actions of increasingly vocal indigenous groups fuel further debate.
The engaging seaport city of Valparaíso and neighboring Viña del Mar serve as program bases. Excursions to nearby Santiago, intensive field study, and a homestay with indig-enous families provide a deeper appreciation of the attitudes, behaviors, practices, and values encompassed within the diverse Chilean landscape.

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Date:2006-09-30 14:20
Subject:I am in love, bitches!

Me- I used to really hate my nose, and then I came to terms with it.
Noah- I never would have dated you if you didn't have that nose.
Me- Why not?
Noah- Because it's you.

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Date:2006-08-26 20:03

which member of Sleater-Kinney are you?

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