Category Archives: Chile

A Bookmark in Time

As Tina so eloquently described on her post on the Adriatic coast, songs can be a bookmark in time. Hearing them brings us back to a particular moment in our lives that can’t be replicated. There are two songs in particular that will always remind me of my time in South America.

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Filed under Argentina, Chile, Music

Aerial View of the Andes

Mountains with Plane Wing

I grew up on the flat plains of Illinois, so living near the mountains in Santiago was a thrill for me. When I was a young girl, I was drawn to life near sandy beaches for their exoticism, the alien texture of fine sand between my toes and the  menacing sound of waves pulling the rocks back into the sea. When I visited family in San Diego, I had aspirations of settling in southern California and becoming a surfer princess on the weekends.

I can now see myself living near mountains, especially ones covered in snow in the winter. For me, they symbolize a more powerful force, like living below the lair of gods.

Here are some photos of our flight from Santiago to Buenos Aires.

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Filed under Argentina, Chile

Things I’ll Miss about Chile

Photo Credit: Matt.Hintsa

It has been six months since we moved to Santiago de Chile. We are moving to Buenos Aires on July 15 again for a short time.

After reading my Some Things I Miss post about expat life, Tee from Adventure Journalist asked what I’ll miss about South America when I return to the United States. While the South America question is a much larger explanation, I’d like to offer some things I’ll miss about life in Chile.

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Filed under Chile, Santiago

La Chascona | Pablo Neruda’s Home

La Chascona
Photo Credit: magical_world

The Chilean Nobel Prize winning poet Pablo Neruda owned three homes in Chile–two outside Santiago and one in Barrio Bellavista in Santiago. His home in Bellavista is named after his third wife Mathilde: “La Chascona” which pays tribute to her unruly hair.

Neruda was one of the strongest influences during my graduate studies in poetry. His use of the sea, death, harvest, and light is potent. I always imagined that his home would be full of pretty odds and ends like the lyrical inspirations that poets often collect for their work. We are like scavengers, often with a penchant for eccentric collections outside of language.

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Filed under Arts, Chile, Santiago

Reserva Nacional Río Clarillo

Rio Clarillo 1

Our last hike in Chile was in the Reserva Nacional Río Clarillo, about an hour outside Santiago next to the town of Pirque. The day was bittersweet for me. We are leaving these friends and the spectacular mountains.

Rio Clarillo 2

The weather forecast called for rain, but we only had a few sprinkles throughout the eight hour walk. It was a refreshing day–the air was just a little too cold to stop for very long. But that makes the best walking conditions.

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Filed under Chile, Santiago

First Impressions of Chile

Margaret at Cachando Chile wrote a great piece on her first experiences in Chile. She’s been here for 18 years now. Since she invited others to share their impressions, I thought it would be a good opportunity to write a less structured post than I usually write. Perhaps a more open post since I’m typically not a candid writer on the blog. These were my thoughts in the first month in Chile after arriving at the end of December, 2008.


E. and I arrived in Santiago after crossing the Andes by bus. About the moment we crossed into the Chilean side of the mountains, I started experiencing post nasal drip which by the time we arrived in Santiago turned into a full blown sinus infection. I knew to expect more pollution in Santiago, but I wasn’t expecting to get sick so quickly! (I have to admit to inheriting a poor excuse for sinuses.)

The first couple months, my lungs hurt certain days. This has stopped, which is probably a bad sign. My body has succumbed to the pollution.

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Filed under Chile, City Center, New to Town, Santiago

Cerro El Roble | The Oak Hill

Top View

It’s becoming Fall here! So strange to be writing about Fall foods like casseroles and chilly weather when so many of you are breaking out your skirts and t-shirts.

I went on another hike last weekend–this one on Cerro El Roble–The Oak Hill–and located in La Campana National Park about an hour and a half outside of Santiago on route five near Til Til. The forest was full of bright orange and deep red leaves.

This is the view from the top.

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Filed under Chile