Carretear

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Meaning: to party/ hang out/celebrate (slang)
It’s new years eve in Valparaíso- a place full of colourful street art, creativity and one of the biggest parties in South America. At midnight the beautiful city of topsy-turvy houses built on top of one another will be lit up by a huge display of fireworks exploding over the ocean. We climb one of the many cerros (hills) passing sweet old ladies selling alcoholic drinks illegally (one of them our landlady tía) and join the hordes of people awaiting the countdown to midnight. The fireworks finally erupt and everyone cheers and tries to avoid getting sprayed in the face with silly string and beer thrown in the air. After midnight the real party starts. Valpo natives really know how to carretear (party). In the square we drink tia’s homemade drinks and talk shit with our Chilean friends from our hostel and then dance between toilet breaks down dark alleys. The two portaloos are really not cutting it for the hundreds of people in the square. By dawn its time for us little Australians to head home, but for our Chilenos the party is just beginning. The next day is spent in a fog, learning the true meaning of caña (hungover) but the Chileans are still nowhere to be found. Only by evening time on the 2nd January do we see them again, having finally made it home from welcoming in the new year, true Valpo style.

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