I Came All the Way Here for THIS?

I arrived in Santiago, Chile after an 11-hour overnight flight from New Zealand and just like that my “traveler” status changed.  I was no longer traveling for travel’s sake; I was MOVING.  And I was FREAKED OUT.  After just a few days here I had a revelation:  When you’re traveling in a foreign country, many of its negative qualities can be viewed as minor annoyances.  For example: Australia is expensive?  That’s okay, I’m only here for two weeks.  Hanoi is crazy, loud, and crowded?  That’s okay, that’s part of its charm.  India is dirty?  That’s unfortunate, but at least I’m not living on the streets here.  But when you MOVE to a foreign country (especially one you’ve never been to before), your eyes are open in a different way.  You notice things that would have gone unnoticed before.  You are bothered by things that wouldn’t have bothered you as a mere traveler.  And you ask questions, lots of them, to find out more about your new home.

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