All posts tagged: Arica

Iquique: a Chilean writing retreat

It is a sad and bewildering bus journey that takes me away from Bolivia and on to the Chilean coast. I say an early morning goodbye to Adam who flies home that day and board my 5.30am bus bound for Arica – a surfing town in the north of Chile. Exhausted and rather deflated by Adam’s departure I sleep my way through most of the early part of the journey, waking to find stunning volcanoes stark on the landscape as we reach the border. My Spanish receives a severe knock here as I hear the Chilean accent for the first time and regress back to my Mexico self, shaking my head and saying no intiendo after most exchanges. This makes the border crossing – stressful as they can be anyway – all the more bemusing, especially as Chile is extremely strict with what goes into the country. All our bags have to be scanned. The guy on the seat next to me is far too chatty for my contemplative mood and his accent especially indecipherable. I …