Quatre mois de découverte et d'enseignement de FLE au Chili!

12/05/2007 - Peluquera y.... ladrona! (Hairdresser meets lockpick!)

Publié dans La vie à Temuco
I have just helped Estela the hairdresser and the 73 year old, Marseillaise-singing senora Alicia (the other lodger here who pops up from time to time ) break into Alicia's bedroom after she lost the keys to the lock!!! Armed with a hammer and the tools Alicia uses to create necklaces out of pieces of wire, we prised, hammered and twisted our way around the lock to eventually get the door open! Quelles aventures!

This comes after 24 hours of tears and turmoil in the house... Yesterday when I came back from class at 10pm, Estela was sobbing in the kitchen. Even in her hushed tones, I could make out that the situation was the "viejo de mierda"'s fault... Abandoned champagne glasses on the dining room table led me to imagine a family reunion turned sour, a family secret let out in the open... who knows! I know that Estela has not had an easy life... Bref, I decided that it was not the best moment to turn up expecting my once,  and so saught refuge in my bedroom, with a packet of bisuits to keep me company!

This morning I thought all would have calmed down but tramping footsteps in the house and male voices soon made me believe otherwise. And indeed, this morning, it was senora Alicia who would surprise me... Going to the kitchen to get my breakfast, I saw her sitting at the table with a man engaged in deep conversation... her long-lost son I thought. I decided to take my breakfast into my room but first needed to get to the teabags in the living room... I would have to disturb them! Breaking their conversation, Alicia took great pleasure in presenting la francesa to...her pololo!!!!!! Yes, Alicia has herself a young, bald and slightly dodgy-looking boyfriend! They were indeed sitting hand in hand!! What a surprise!!!

After a comment on my breakfast (a bowl of cereal with a banana), I rapidly retreated, somewhat stunned to my bedroom! What was going on in the "home" that had been so calm  and orderly until now (apart from Alicia's appearances in the morning while I'm eating my breakfast, where she randomly spouts French words, shows me photos of her grand-children - one of whom is a male model for Fructis hair products - and tells me how she was a dancer, lifting her legs and pointing her toes in proof!!)??!

I spent the afternoon out of the house. When I returned it was time for once and Estela came to call me, as per usual. We had just sat down with our cups of mate when the doorbell rings... siempre asi! But no, it is not a client in urgent need of a perm but senora Alicia who has lost her keys! She arrives in the living room in a cry of "Estellita, tengo tu bebida"!!! And out comes a bottle of pisco sour!!! And three slices of cream cake!!!! It is Estela's fête today and Alicia has bought cake to share! Imagine the scene: three generations of women, reunited around our cups of mate, cream cake and the ultimate telenovela , El corazon de Maria! Ha ha ha!

After this, Alicia decides that she will force open her door... With pliers and other tools she attempts to twist the padlock open. To no avail... Estela takes pity and goes off to fetch more heavy-duty equipment: the hammer/wrench... And after 15 minutes of puffing and panting, off comes the padlock!!!! Victory!!

Such a strange chain of events, involving an all-female cast you will note. I have actually been mentally preparing an article for this blog on the strength of the women here in Chile...it's something I noticed as soon as I arrived and that deserves a mention!

While I put my ideas in place, let me take this opportunity to wish Happy Mother's Day to all the Mothers reading, and in particular mine!!! I know that in France it is not on the same day (and that in England it's probably different too) but here in Chile, it is this Sunday... I have planned to buy flowers for Estela... and maybe more cake...!!!!!

PS Estela has just knocked on my door to pass me my guatero, the ugliest looking hot-water bottle I have ever seen but such a kind gesture!!!! :

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