Passion, politics, and plunder are the magnetic forces that have been drawing me to Chile since I can remember. After returning to Santiago from the W trek, I decided to spend my final RTW week learning about the country through its art.
It takes knowing a local to gain this type of perspective and appreciation. A dear friend — a Chilean woman through and through — showed me the ropes. Together we explored the gritty streets of Santiago and rolling hills of Valparaiso, a port town over an hour away whose homes are painted distinct, electric colors. Fishermen began this tradition ages ago, wanting to be able to spot their home from a distance. I imagine them waiving farewell to loved ones as they become smaller and smaller specks on the horizon — the sea slowly swallowing up their world. With new insights — some inevitably warped by isolation — I see them return, pulled back by the forces of home and heart. Exhausted, but with everything in focus.