September 9th, 2015: Brenda, Philipp & I venture down in altitude from Bolivia to San Pedro de Atacama, Chile. We settle in at our hostels, unpack, get lunch. Already there’s a big difference between Chile & what I experienced in Bolivia. Nice bathrooms, toilet paper, toilet seats, soap, no crap all over the toilet, showers with warm water, sanitation and WIFI! I feel a bit guilty about the wifi part. It’s great for researching places or staying connected and yet that’s not why I’m here. I came to be disconnected from my system in order to further deepen my connection with myself. It’s a part of traveling that I loved getting used to putting away for a bit. I’ll be disconnected until I’m ready and good.
As we all find our places to settle in, Brenda & I stay in a hostel together where there’s some hammocks tied up under the warm sun. It’s a great place to relax after being on the go non stop for the last 2 weeks. We go with Philipp & some other new friends to local bars, restaurants & festivities. Brenda & I even find a night to go on a stargazing tour with one of the friendliest guides I ever met. This guy talked about astronomy like it was his passion. He served us wine, cookies & educated us on the southern constellations. Here, I saw stars organized in ways I’ve never seen before. The Southern Cross, Scorpio, etc. & of course the Milky Way. I’m like a kid taking pictures with my lens. I’m in heaven looking up at heaven realizing that from another star I am part of this heavenly image as well. I see that I am a part of something far bigger than myself.
“With all the destruction within ourselves & the world, from afar it will look beautiful in the universe. Maybe this is the way we should be reminded to look at ourselves from time to time. There is beauty even in times where we think there is none.”
The next day we decide to venture out to Valley de la Luna, or Valley of the Moon. It’s a long day & a fun journey through this valley. Various rock & sand formations, so desolate & so beautiful. We play on these rocks & climb through the caves like kids. It’s a truly fun day.
On our last day together, Brenda & I have lunch and she buys me a bracelet to remember our friendship by. I’m wearing it even now as I write this almost 4 months after the fact. As I walk out of town to find the bus station that will take me to La Serena, I so happen to run into Philipp at the end of his bike journey around the area that day. It was good to see him before I left for one last time, yet hopefully not forever.
“Friends I meet traveling are so easy to connect with. Sad to be alone again.” “La Serena – Santiago – Osorno” “Here I go again on my own.”