Evagelia Analitis
May 16, 2015

The weeks have been going by so fast! It's already May and I cannot believe it. A lot has happened since I last wrote and I am so glad I finally have the time to share my experiences. I chose to go on the field trip excursion with IES to Chiloe. It was an incredible decision on my part. Chiloe is an archipelago, south of Santiago. It is a beautiful place filled with a distinct culture. It is known for its folklore. IES planned a historian to talk with us about the legends surrounding the area. I found it fascinating to learn that the nautical folklore in Chiloe is very similar to the nautical folklore of Ireland. How could these places be so far from each other but share the same legends of the people?

I had the opportunity to visit a female artesian wood-working shop. These women provide for their families by gathering dead trees and recycling them through their work. They make tables, chairs, desks, cheese boards, coasters, etc. The hard work that these women commit to is truly desirable. It is a sustainable way to make a living without harming the environment. Our class made a key chain from a sacred bark of the Mapuche people. I will cherish it forever.

We ate amazing meals - some made by the families we visited and some by the hostels we stayed in. Words cannot describe the beauty that I saw in Chiloe. It is something that one has to see for themselves. One of the most liberating memories was when our group finished eating a full course meal along the seashore and ran through green fields towards the ocean. We descended a man-made stairway until we reached the beach. A pregnant, wild cow was grazing the shoreline and enjoying the water. There were wild horses and we were just jittery from excitement. 

Chiloe was the most serene place that I have ever been to in my life. The people were very friendly and humble in the way in which they lived. I bought wool socks and hats for my siblings. I cannot wait to go back and be able to give them these items. Not just because they are a token of my study abroad experience, but because of the breathtaking story behind them. I hope that I am able to convey the beauty of this place through my words. However, I feel that they will better understand through the spark in my eyes when reminiscing on this experience.

Until next time...

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Evagelia Analitis

<p>I am twenty years old from Chicago, Illinois. I am passionate about learning, travel, books, writing poetry, and taking pictures. I am always looking for a new experience. My goal is to be open-minded throughout my life. I am inspired by the ability to express myself and who I truly am through my creative work.&nbsp;</p>

2015 Spring
Home University:
Illinois Wesleyan University
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