I safely flew into Buenos Aires today and am awaiting the beautiful and talented Maureen Purcell.
It’s strange to think that I don’t live in Chile anymore, and will only see its airport in two weeks. But my last week there was a good one. I didn’t do anything remarkable. Mostly it was a series of lunches and goodbye dinners with friends I’d made in Chile. I stayed on my friend Lola’s floor, cooked a lot of pancakes, and generally relaxed.
On Friday my friend Weiru and I walked the length of Parque Forestral and talked about our time in Chile. Walking though that park has been something I’ve wanted to do since I arrived but never had the time. We talked until the sun went down and the large fountain in the middle of the park lit up in colors.
Chile was difficult and beautiful and frustrating and exciting. I learned more in these six months then I have in all my time in college, and I barely had any classes. I can’t say I loved it. I can’t say I hated it. All I can say is that it made me a better person and changed my life. Which in the long run is a good thing to be able to say about a place.
Weiru put it best. Chile was simply the backdrop to the many one-of-a-kind experiences we had here (how many of our friends can say they witnessed a major social movement for education). That we stayed and took everything this country had to throw at us in stride, just means that we were able to see the unique beautiful things Chile had to offer. What we remember is deeper then a connection to a place and time. Like Neruda said, our memories of this place will always be Un testimonio que he vivido.
I don’t have any words to sum it up yet, and when people ask me what study abroad was like, I might still say “it was interesting,” for lack of a better adjective. I’m just happy I did it.
But now that it’s over, I get to enjoy two weeks of tourism in a gorgeous sea side city with one of my favorite people on the planet 🙂