Posts Tagged ‘Chile’

How I Learned to Shut Up and Listen

I sat at a table of no fewer than fifteen people on the street Pio Nono, entry to Bellavista, the down-home party section of Santiago, Chile. I’d been invited to go out for a beer after the monthly critical mass bike ride, and we stacked our bikes tidily (handlebars to rear wheel) against a nearby tree and set to the matter at hand. We sat at a long series of card tables extending down the street, each of us perched on one of those ubiquitous white plastic chairs, serving ourselves beer into small glasses from the liter bottles of Escudo on the center of the tables. Some, drinkers of fan-schop (a Chilean specialty), mixed theirs with Fanta. I drank mine plain, and listened.

I arrived to Chile in 2004, with way more than a passing knowledge of Spanish. Between high school and a couple of travel and study stints in the mundo hispanohablante (Spanish-speaking world), I could express myself fairly well, if not cleverly. Hadn’t I explained the electoral college to a group of teachers in Antigua, Guatemala in the 90s? Wasn’t it me who grabbed other travelers by the hand to take them to the post office, the bus station, to get their hair cut? I enjoyed helping, expressing, being in charge. I could get you a seat on the bus, a doorstop, tape to fix a book – you name it. I could ask for it directly or circumlocute it. I spoke, and people understood. At the time, I felt that this was the only necessary linguistic accomplishment. You, listen to me. And then it was over.

12 Hidden Gems: Great Destinations that Caught Us by Surprise

If places we expect much of sometimes disappoint, the inverse is also true. Today, travellers share about places they visited that turned out to be hidden gems.

From the very obscure to the well-known, each of these travel tales attests to the fact that the best moments in travel catch you by surprise.


Eileen Smith is living the expat life in Santiago, Chile. Her blog is a collection of day-to-day observations, infused with her bright, sometimes snarky, writing style.

Marisa and Izzy’s Blogsite

Izzy and Marisa set out in September on a round-the-world trip together, scarcely eight months after they first met. Their journey has taken them through the United States and South America, while they have contemplated their lives and their relationship. This week, Marisa heads back to Mexico to work, while Izzy will continue on the [...]

Southern Cone Travel

Wayne Bernhardson is an expert on Argentina, Chile and Patagonia, having written the Moon Handbooks for all three (as well as Buenos Aires).

Talking beer, business and travel with Greg Wesson

Greg Wesson is a travel guru. He has travelled across Asia and Europe, attempted to climb Mount Kilimanjaro and forayed into Latin America.

But most of his travel is closer to home, where his job as a management consultant has kept him busy traversing North America for the last decade.

  • The Guy: I think Dave and Jodi raise some very valid points and they are consistent with my perceptions based on over...
  • Jay Daviot: Epic list! There are some great blogs there. Would love to see a few more blogs from photographers though...
  • John: I’ve always wanted to hitch hike across the USA.
  • Sara Wikoff: I found your post very interesting. I am just a Freshman in college and I have not decided my major yet....
  • John: Great advice, I always buy charcoal tabs in case I get an upset tummy.
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