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Past to Present: Experiences as a Foreigner

Visitor Stories
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By CIEE

Mendoza, Argentina: You knew me first when I was a scared homesick tongue-tied simultaneously let-it-be student. And you changed me.

Viña del Mar, Chile: You knew me first when I was an unstoppable, determined, don't-look-back, go with the flow, focused, unprepared English professor. And you changed me.

And here I am, hour 3 of the mountainous, breathtaking and nauseating traverse between Argentina and Chile. This is the conclusion of a 6-day visit home to Mendoza for Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year.  I feel as if I'm traveling over the curvy (hence the nausea) path between my past and my present: The four years smushed into 7-12 hours (depending on how congested customs is). It wasn't easy for me to get here, on this bus. In fact, I was supposed to return 3 days ago. But many things can happen in a short time.

This time four short years ago I was right in the middle of my study abroad semester in Mendoza, Argentina, located 7 hours from Santiago, Chile. My program of 30 or so students was composed completely of... (Read More)