It’s a year ago today since I landed in Santiago, extremely excited, a little nervous, and full of optimism for the new life I was planning. It’s been an incredible journey, and I’ve learned and achieved so much.
I got an ID card, found a long-term apartment, improved my Spanish, registered with the tax system, opened a bank account, joined a gym and a movie club, joined the health service, registered with a clinic, and seen some excellent ophthalmologists at a hospital.
There have been tears of frustration when I couldn’t figure things out, and tears of laughter with the brilliant new friends I’ve made. Students have become close friends, lovers have come and gone.
I’ve learned that the best clothes come from charity shops and that the worst drink is piscola. I’ve visited some stunning parts of the country but still have many places left to see.
Today I’ll walk through the suburban streets on my way to my face-to-face English lessons, kicking up the falling leaves and smiling pretty much the entire time.
This month I applied for a new visa so I can stay in this amazing country even longer. I know I live in a privileged part of Santiago and that Chile has its problems, but right now, for me, there’s no place that I’d rather be.
Happy anniversary to me, and I hope that you are able to chase your own dreams, too.