In 9 weeks’ time I will arrive in Santiago, Chile, no doubt jetlagged and tired after what will be a 24hr+ journey. Only after trying to find some flights to get me there did I realise just how far and out-of-the-way Chile really is!
Earlier this week I made a trip to London to the Chilean consulate to complete the last stage of getting my visa. All went well and after only an hour the visa was there in my passport! All I had to do was give the nice Chilean guy a few more documents, sign something in Spanish and get my thumb printed on the document. If it turns out I’ve signed my life away and the Chilean government are after me, remind me to chop off my right thumb. They’ll never get me then.
Now that I had my visa I could start looking at flights. I finally booked it today, and I’ll be flying straight from Cardiff! 🙂 No need to worry about getting to Heathrow on a Friday afternoon, I get to fly from my local airport. Although flying time was shorter from London, there’s the added time of getting there, checking in early, and leaving enough time to get through traffic – not the sort of worries I want at the start of a 24 hour journey!
The picture above isn’t entirely accurate as I’ll actually be going across to Amsterdam to get my connecting flight to Santiago. It’s going to be a very long day where I’ll no doubt read a lot of books, watch loads of films and attempt to get some kind of quality sleep on an aeroplane. Touching down on Saturday morning will give me a few days to recover before a week of intensive training starts on the Monday.
My trip to London was necessary to get the ball rolling for my next adventure, but as I HAD to go I decided to make the most of my little trip and have a mini-adventure while I was there. Here’s what my adventure consisted of:
Arriving in London midday gave me the time to enjoy a café lunch before wandering through Kensington Gardens.
Then I met up with my good friend Georgie at the Natural History Museum. We had a great evening catching up on everything before making our way to the theatre for an amazing evening at Wicked!
After more chatting we finally went to bed. Next morning we got ready and went our separate ways. I sorted out my visa, then hopped on a bus up to Camden town to meet up with someone from Couchsurfing.
I then hopped on a train to Brighton to see my other friend Oscar. We also had a great catch up and I drank a ridiculous amount of tea. In the morning Oscar had to go to work so I wandered around Brighton, on the beach front and through the lanes before hopping on my train back home. I’d never been to Brighton before and thought it was a lovely place, but being mid-week it was pretty much dead. Not many people about and it was a grey day, but I imagine the beach would be a wonderful place in the summer with all the little shops along the front and people enjoying the sunshine.
All in all a wonderful mid-week jaunt to some new places with some old friends, and seeing some old places in a new way while also sorting out some all-important documents.
Visa stamped, flights booked, Chile here I come!