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Chilean birthday tops 'camping' trip

In my previous article, I mentioned that I would be going on a camping trip with my family. Well, we went, and "camping" isn't really the word I would use. It was more of a, "going to one of the houses on one of the farms that my uncle owns in the middle of farm country."

Don't get me wrong, I had a lovely time sitting around eating meat, but when my family said, "camping" I actually thought we'd be camping. "Roughing it" in the words of my mother apparently just means not having a shower. She should have seen (and smelled) me last summer after six days in the Boundary Waters.

Aside from eating loads of meat, we played capture the flag, fed crazy chickens, made disgusting tomato sauce and drove through a cow barn and saw the scariest cow ever. (Her eye was protruding about three inches out of its eye socket).

All of the cousins were piled in to a truck and all of us started screaming our heads off when we saw this cow. It was disgusting.

On Wednesday morning, I was greeted with presents and hugs from my family; it was my birthday! My mother gave me fancy earrings made out of a traditional Chilean stone, my sister gave me my favorite candy in the whole entire world, and my father gave me "Lion King" One and "Lion King" Two in Spanish.

You could say that my day started out pretty darn awesome.

When I arrived at school, I was greeted with kisses and hugs and wishes for a happy birthday. I received more of my favorite candy from my friend Jorge. He even knows me well enough to have put my gift in a bag decorated with cats.

After school, I had a couple of my friends over to hang out. I jokingly told my friend Javier that I was sad he didn't get me a gift.

He instantly proclaimed, "I'm such an idiot. I can't believe I forgot a gift!" I told him it was no problem, but he insisted on getting me a gift.

He told me that he was going to get me a cat because he knows how much I love cats. It's almost unhealthy how much I love cats. So he then called some of his friends who he knew could get me a cat and arranged to buy me a cat. This whole time I'm thinking, "What on earth is he doing!?"

I told Javier that I couldn't accept this cat despite how much I wanted it. What would I tell my parents if I just randomly came home with a cat one day?

So fortunately and unfortunately I did not get a cat for my birthday. On the upside, I had a lovely time enjoying my other gifts. Turns out, "Lion King" is almost better in Spanish. In a way, it just seems happier.

I must say that I was devastated when I found out that the Spanish version is a different story than the one you and I are familiar with. I started crying an extra time while I watched in horror as Simba sang a song with a groundhog. I wanted to crawl in a hole and live there for a couple days. I just couldn't believe it.

Even though I missed out on my usual birthday activity of camping at Itasca with my family and best friends, my birthday in Chile made up for it. It was definitely a day that I will never forget.

I'm looking forward to all of the other days of this year, a year that I know will change my life forever.

Berit Ramstad Skoyles is a junior at Detroit Lakes High School but is studying aboard this year in Chile.