20.02.15 - Santiago, Chile
Santiago reminds me a lot of Copenhagen. Very safe and clean and with a moderate amount of things to do. A lot of people think this place is boring, but for slow travellers like us it is pretty ideal. With the exception of the lack of Wi-Fi. Considering how nice and clean this city is, the Wi-Fi speed is surprisingly aggravating. Luckily we’ve had pretty descent Wi-Fi in our houses.
For Valentine’s Day, someone made it tradition in Santiago to hollow out melons, fill them with white wine and get drunk in the park. Of course we wanted to participate in this “melon-con-vino” festival, so we got the ingredients and headed to the large park in the dodgy end of town. When we found the park and began looking for an entrance, something amusing happened. Two cops that both looked younger than us and very inexperienced awkwardly shuffled back and forth, looking like they were considering whether or not to approach us. We knew that drinking in public was illegal in Chile, but we also knew that there were around 1000 people who were about to do so, and I’d like to see those two rookie policemen stop them. In the end it seems they decided they should try and do their job and they walked up to us, asking us what we were up to in Spanish. All of a sudden I turned into a little Danish girl with no idea what they said, even though the truth was I understood perfectly. They were just so awkward I hoped they’d leave us alone if we just looked at them in confusion. Actually they almost did. If I hadn’t felt so bad for them, blushing and smiling awkwardly flashing braces, I would probably have kept acting like I didn’t understand a word of what they said. But through broken Spanglish we eventually came to an understanding that were not supposed to let our melon and wine into the park. So Alex and I headed back to city center, disappointed that the police had apparently decided to try and stop the melon-con-vino event. If only we had shown up later along with all the locals. But it was ok, we just went home to our rooftop and got happily buzzed in the sun with our feet in the pool. In the evening I surprised Alex with a Peruvian valentines dinner.
06.03.15 - Valparaiso, Chile
I actually already wrote this once, but then my Word fucked up after half a page and now I’m starting over. So. Fun. Valparaiso. A large hub of sheet metal and wavy hills that someone accidentally dropped two tons of paint on. This city is like no other, a magical place with art and colors on all walls, staircases, dogs and roofs. Alex is convinced this place is his spirit animal. Although I love the mystery of it and the way new hidden gems lie behind every corner and on every unexplored hilltop, I am not sure he really knows what he’s saying. Yes, it is beautiful and unique. It has the beach a 15 min busride away. It is stuffed with alternative colorful latinos eating empanadas and completos while looking bored with the world and too cool for school. Maybe if I was Chilean and had grown up with the Chilean cuisine and culture I would choose to live here, but I really don’t feel like this city is varied enough that I could see myself living here. I would get so tired of the Chilean food (mainly hotdogs and empanadas – healthy) and stepping over sleeping stray dogs all the time. I think my butt would hurt a lot from all the mountain climbing after a while too…
I’m reading a lot of books about psychology lately, and the more I dive into environmental, developmental, linguistic, character, and sociological psychology, the more sure I am that I want to study psychology. Alex always talks about all these ways you can make money online, and although I put up an interested expression and try to listen carefully I must admit I find it extremely dull. Not only the actual act of creating an online business or website or whatever but also the whole idea of working from a computer the rest of my life. I know you can go to a “shared office space” and get sort of the feeling you’re in a regular office while you do your thing, but that’s not the point. It’s not that I mind working on my computer alone, it’s that I don’t want to work on a computer at all. I know it means I could do what I wanted: travel the world and wake up whenever i please. And I do love it for now. I am getting a whole lot of translation work as I gain experience, clients and good ratings. It's fun to log out after 5 hours and head straight to the beach, but that’s not what I want to do with my life. I know. It’s a mystery to me why the idea of a stable apartment, a home address and the same route to work every day sounds tempting to me, but it truly does.
We’re headed up to Mexico next – we realized the charm of South America really persists in it’s natural wonders and interesting nature. Such as the salt lakes, the Matchu Pitchu, and the mountains of Patagonia. Being digital nomads we're forced to stick to the cities, and they really aren’t all that inspiring. Southern Mexico looks beautiful and cheap and we’re really looking forward to it. Of course there’s the detail of safety, but in spite of all the scary stories of human trafficking and the cartel killing innocents, I’m not too worried. In general it seems that everywhere is relatively safe as long as you're careful. And as long as you travel in a pair that includes a 2 meter tall giant of course...