According to the experts, culture shock is simply a common way to describe the confusing and nervous feelings a person may have after leaving a familiar culture to visit or live in a new and different culture.
Generally when tourists visit a new place they are excited about a new adventure. However not being able to understand what people are saying is almost as frustrating as not knowing how to make people understand what you are saying. It’s a good idea to learn key words of the foreign language before visiting a new country.
It might make you uncomfortable when it takes you twice as long to say the same thing as a native speaker, or use the wrong word, but remember that if you are visiting Chile you have nothing to worry about, Chilean people are very helpful and friendly.
Some times our upbringing has made it difficult for us to accept other customs and believes. When we do accept the diversity of our own culture, we’ll be more open to accept the universal diversity and the globalization within the diversity. So, rather than giving up your culture so you can fit in, keep your mind open to new ways of doing and thinking about things. Notice things that are the same and things that are different. Appreciating that variety is what makes people so interesting.
Remember, the key to getting over your culture shock is understanding the new culture and finding a way to live comfortably within it while keeping true to the parts of your culture that you value.
She came from another land
In Chile, the brother of her California she found
Our way of thinking was difficult for her to understand…
the street dogs broke her heart
and Pablo Neruda love poems made her read
“La Chascona” she called herself
and in Bellavista with “poncho” of alpaca
and jewels of silver, her body was wrapped
With music of Intillimani and an Italian soprano
she sailed by the desert until finding San Pedro de Atacama
and in less than a week she was back
She went in search of “something” I did not know what…
On her return she was different, dancing and singing with a celestial voice
something that expressed “only think about the roses, not the thorns”…
and after her visit to the pre-Columbian museum
pledged with the “quipu” incaico of knots of colors, she came
“Chupalla” and hat of huaso she took
they would decorate the walls of her house in Washington D.C, she declared
I saw her leaving with a different expression than the one she arrived with
and in spite of announcing to be ready to return home
I saw sadness in her eyes…
and I knew that she would return to admire the indigenous people,
their “quipu” and its magic soul.
“Casa Newen Bed & Breakfast” Santiago, Chile, March 2007