UPDATED: I got the permission and have purchased the plane tickets to Santiago. So next Friday I’ll be going back on the road, back to Santiago, Chile. This prompts a quote from “There’s Something About Mary,” even though the timing is slightly off.
-“Who goes to Santiago, Chile twice in a year?…I’ve never even been to Jersey!”
I’m hoping to soon get back on the road, though there are no promises yet. We have a three-day weekend coming up on October 8th for Columbus Day (yes, it’s celebrated in Argentina too) and I could really use a break from Buenos Aires. I’m kind of burned out and lately have been feeling like I’m in a rut, and my friend Nicole from Santiago, Chile offered me a place to stay if I came and visited.
I checked the airfare yesterday morning, and while they aren’t exactly giving the flight away, it’s reasonable, especially for something necessary like a weekend away to clear the old noggin. But of course by the afternoon the price jumped up and now I’m afraid that by the time I get final word on whether or not I have permission to just work a half day on the 8th, the flight will either be too expensive or sold out altogether.
A change of pace is definitely needed, and I’ve been exhausting all possible options on what I can do with this three-day weekend. I rarely get out of Buenos Aires and haven’t had a full night out of the city since I was in Patagonia in January. Travel is a part of me after all, and I need to get a little adventure in me before I go nuts. But most importantly, it’s just a need for a fresh start. I spent five months in Spain before going home and 11 months in Ecuador before a quick trip back. Now I’ve been in Argentina over 13 months without having returned home once. I need a break in order to continue here, and that’s just the way it is.
Most of my friends who have become long term expats have been able to manage their sanity with frequent trips and visits home. For a teacher in Ecuador, for example, it’s just a few hours to the beach or to visit some friends in the capital. Colombia or Peru are farther away but make a great trip during one of the numerous vacations you get throughout the year. Some people I knew in Ecuador would go home every few months. These brief respites are what help some people get through the distance and cultural differences. I’ve never really needed it before, but then again I was able to travel frequently in Ecuador and everything was so new for the majority of my first year in Buenos Aires that I didn’t notice it. But without traveling I’ve been getting homesick more often and need something to take my mind off of it.
Since I have no real vacation time until at least January and I want to make the most of my time in South America while I can, I won’t be able to go home for a few days and freshen up. All I can hope for is that I get the chance to go to Chile, and maybe start doing some weekend trips as the spring progresses.