Another Trip Down South

Another Trip Down South


I try my hardest to not come off as a repetitive person, but I do find it hard to let things go and as I enter my last years of college I've come to realize what some of my shortcomings are, and I'm ashamed of admitting being repetitive it's a big one. So, just in an effort to prove my point, here is another story about a trip I took.

This time I found myself traveling back home, a place I left because I wanted to learn what else what out there, but now I consider myself lucky to visit. As it is usual we packed up our fishing gear and headed out, this time my Dad was joining me. Our goal was to reach the end of the continent, then cross the Estrecho de Magallanes and then drive across Tierra del Fuego, stopping to fish along the way.

This was another side of my country, one I had not seen yet, Chile is a very special place--as I'm sure most of us feel about our homes--Chile is the long skinny one on the west coast of South America, mostly known for our Football team, our one of a kind charm (a not so charming one), and our earthquakes. Extending for 2,653 miles from north to south, the Chilean Territory encompasses a wide variety of climates and landscapes, from the driest desert in the world in El Desierto de Atacama, one of the biggest mountain ranges in the world in La Cordillera de Los Andes, to Patagonia, Tierra del Fuego and even a part of Antartica. A mixture of slangs give shape to some weird unknown type of Spanish only Chileans seem to be able to master, ancient professions and techniques have flourished her; from fishermen over in the southern coasts to miners up north, and forest workers spread all over the southern lands. Although, in this new era most of this old-time artisans have seen their jobs on the line as bigger companies keep making their way into the lands and oceans. Luckily it's the fierceness of the land that keeps traditions alive and down south the "gauchos", fisherman and farmers are a testament to the quality of the old techniques. We still haven't become an industrialized country and we mainly serve as raw material exporters; we are one of the top copper extractors in the world. Life here hasn't achieved much but has managed to live a stable existence, something I would never dare criticizing.

For this trip, my old man and I got to see what is known down here as "Pampa" which covers most of Tierra del Fuego, vast fields and huge portions of land with nothing, just covered with moss and grass. This is the part of the continent where the mountain range that covers the east side of Chile begins it's descent below sea level, just to reappear over in Antartic territory. This means that winds coming from the ocean don't have anything to stop or slow them down, and they just hit everything in sight, leaving bend and fallen trees anywhere they actually manage to grow, and providing a very harsh environment for any living creature.

Weather is impossible to predict down here, the sun and clouds play games with you and the wind just seems to mock you with the chills it sends up your spine every time it finds you exposed and not ready, in addition to all this rain never quits, if it's not raining on you just have a look around and you'll see some clouds, most likely heading your direction--keep in mind it's summer right now in the southern hemisphere.

The road was plagued by shambles of old farming and cattle "Estancias", some of them abandon by now and some still working. Throughout the land broken down fences spreading across the fields, proving that as hostile as the land might be it was once conquered. It's hard to come to terms with the feelings this type of scenery evokes, the sights weren't as beautiful as one might expect; desolated, dead pastures and forests, abandon houses and barns, and even the rivers were infested with some type of fish-murdering algae.

The land in the south of Chile is mostly own by private parties, almost always belonging to Chilean politicians and as this land contains unexplored reserves of oil and gas, it is a wonder why it still hasn't being worked. Hotels and Lodges are starting to appear in random places, there is life here, it just moves slower and regardless of who's name is in the property documents, farmers, sheep, guanacos, and foxes walk around like the owners of this land, I truly feel thankful and humbled to have been here.

Cover Image Credit: Emilio Betanzo

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it


Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

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9 Things To Do In Nashville If You Have No Idea What To Do

Trust me, I was just as lost as you are.


Nashville is a great place packed full of lots of really cool smaller great places that all offer their own unique take on the city. If you're like me, though, and have a hard time ~planning ahead~, then this list is exactly what you need. I went around and got lost and tried all the coolest hidden gems in Nashville so you don't have to. Here are some of my faves.

1. Milk & Honey Nashville

Located in the Gulch, Milk & Honey is the coffee shop/cafe from my dreams. It's decorated perfectly for any cute insta story and y'all when I say their coffee is amazing I mean it. Try it. It's so worth it, and pretty easy to find, too! You can browse their menus here.

2. Frothy Monkey Coffee Shop

While we're on the topic of coffee shops, Frothy Monkey is a MUST try. Trust me, I've drunk A LOT of coffee in my lifetime, and theirs is up in the top 10 of the best. They have other good things too, but if you're a coffee person like me, this place is heaven, I promise. It's right off 12th Avenue and within walking distance of lots of other funky little shops.

3. Two Old Hippies

This is the coolest little shop you will ever go into. Tucked away in the Gulch, it's within walking distance of Milk & Honey, so stop by after you grab a coffee and browse. They have everything from handmade clothes to cool books to refrigerator magnets. This is one of my all time favorites and I know you'll love it too.

4. Baked on 8th


I fell in love the second I saw the cute sign. Baked on 8th has a great atmosphere and even better little pastries, cookies, and cakes. Their cookies were so good it took every ounce of self-control I had to not go back and order 2 dozen. 12/10 would recommend if you're into Instagrammable locations and bomb sugar-filled desserts.

5. Burger Republic

I get it, you've gotta eat more than just cookies and coffee. As far as restaurants go, this place is home to the best burger I've ever eaten, plus the atmosphere is pretty laid back and great, and it's an awesome place to go and watch pretty much any sporting event happening anywhere relatively close to Nashville. Browse the menu so you can know exactly what to order before you even get there here.

6. Fido

In case you haven't noticed yet, I'm a HUGE fan of coffee shops and cafes. Fido was the most perfect little spot. It boasts about its gourmet coffee and great food, and rightfully so. It's also got the coolest funky vibe that makes you just want to sit and stay all day, and it's in a great location and decently close to Vanderbilt.

7. Go see some murals

Nashville is FULL of these bad boys. I know y'all have all seen the countless pictures of those people with big butterfly wings. Well, there's more and they're all around the city and on the side of pretty much every building. It's cliche, but tbh it's also kind of a must do while you're there.

8. Walk around Centennial Park and the Parthenon

This is a really nice place to visit if you're looking to spend a couple of hours away from the concrete of the city, and the Parthenon is a full-scale replica of the one in Greece.

9. Ride one of those little scooters around and explore


I'm not gonna lie to y'all. I did not ride the scooters. They seem kind of dangerous and I know without a doubt that if I tried to get on one it would not end well for me, the scooter, or anyone within a 3-mile radius. With that being said, though, I did see a lot of people riding them and it looked pretty fun, plus it's a great way to see the city without walking too much. So if you just want to explore, hop on one of these bad boys and pray.

Nashville is a great city full of tons of tourist attractions and amazing musical history, but if you find yourself stuck with nothing to do for a couple of hours before your next walking tour, you're sure to find something on this list that you'll love. So, you're welcome.

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