Follow yourself.

My imaginary bags were already packed,
I could smell the pisco, my face cringing at the thought of swallowing it, but I would learn.
I felt the guardian gaze of the mountains over my shoulder and the pull of Cape Horn from the south.
Hours after I received the news of my upcoming posting in Santiago de Chile,
I was mentally prepared for the task.
There were books that I devoured.
An architect's guide to Santiago, Chatwin's phantasmagorical novel In Patagonia
an investigative reportage about mining in the Andes, the complete travel guide to Chile and Easter Island.
I watched Gael García Bernal as the confident director of the NO-campaign in Pinochet's 1988 referendum,
and sat through a 2-hour horror film of a demolished discoteque in a Valparaíso earthquake.
There were radio documentaries from exiled Chilenos in Sweden,
there were friends of friends that I should get in touch with. 
And then suddenly here I was, unpacking my very real bags in the midnight sun
- as far from Patagonia as physically possible. The taste of pisco no longer on my tongue.
Forever chasing an illusion is a convenient way of ignoring the now that you are making.
Life becomes a line of stepping stones to help you cross an ever expanding river delta,
When you pause in the middle, you see oceans before you, but yet you don't stop.
If you stop you might have to feel something. You might not know where you are. You might change your mind. 

Mediated experiences always seemed to trump situated ones for me.
Elsewhere is an enchanting place that can be molded into perfection,
And I've spent most of my adult life in a most exciting There.
This time I stopped. 
Instead of following a dream I decided to follow myself.
I felt. And I changed my mind.


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