Sally: La Gringa
Please tell us a little bit about yourself. Who you are, where you come from, when you moved to Chile, etc.
My name is Sally Rose. I am from the United States. Before moving to Chile in 2011, I was living in New York.
When and why did you decide to start blogging about your experiences?
I was already blogging when I moved to Chile. Since my blog is mainly anecdotal, based on my actual experiences, it is now set in Chile.
Do you have any favorite blog entries of yours?
Here is my latest blog post.
Tell us about the ways your new life in Chile differs from that back home. Did you have trouble getting used to the new circumstances? Did you experience culture shock?
I’m still in culture shock - haha. Santiago is a very modern city in many ways, but there are many customs here which are still a mystery to me even after two years. And of course, the language barrier is a huge issue. I am still taking Spanish classes.
Do you think you were fully prepared for what awaited you in Chile? If you could, would you change some decisions/preparations you made?
Not really. I don’t think there’s any way to fully know or understand what expat life would be like until you experience it. I visited Chile several times before moving here, but that’s the “honeymoon phase.” Once you’ve packed up and moved, it’s daily life—the good, the bad, and the sometimes ugly.
Every expat knows that expat life comes with some hilarious anecdotes and funny experiences. Care to share one with us?
Here’s the story of my attempt to get my temporary visa.
Which three tips would you like to give future expats before they embark on their new life in Chile?
- Learn Spanish!
- Don’t expect to do everything the way you’ve always done it. Be prepared to adapt.
- Take a deep breath, explore, and appreciate your beautiful, new country for all that it is.
How is the expat community in Chile? Did you have a hard time finding like-minded people or fellow expats?
There are many expats here. Many are young adventure-seekers who are here very temporarily. Others come here with their families. I fall into neither category. So, sometimes, yes, being an expat can be lonely, but as long as you’re willing to get out and try new things and meet new people, there are plenty of opportunities.
How would you summarize your expat life in Chile in a single, catchy sentence?
I don’t know how catchy it is, but I would say: Never a dull moment for this gringa.