Episode 3 - An English Girl in Uruguay
Hey everyone ! Thank you very much for being here and if this is the first time you’re listening then I send you a warm welcome to this podcast which has been designed to help intermediate level English language students improve their comprehension of the British English language through listening to some diverse and (hopefully!) interesting topics.
The text for each podcast episode can be found on my website - www.britishenglishlanguage.com - and is available to download or print for free. I encourage you to listen to each episode a second time whilst reading the transcription as this will allow you to discover the meanings of new and unfamiliar words and will also help to familiarise you with written grammatical structures.
My name is Amy, I’m a native British girl from England and, in today’s episode I’m going to be sharing with you my experiences of living in Uruguay in South America !
Episode 3 - An English Girl in Uruguay
The first time I visited Uruguay was in January 2014. Actually it had happened by chance. I had been backpacking in Brazil and my next destination was Argentina. But, one night, I met another backpacker from Uruguay who told me about a special place in his country - a hidden gem. In English we use the phrase ‘a hidden gem’ when we’re talking about an amazing place that not many people know about - somewhere more unspoilt, where there are fewer tourists and more of an authentic vibe. This place sounded just like what I was hoping to discover on my travels. So I took his advice, began the 12 hour bus and boat journey from Buenos Aires and arrived in Punta del Diablo, a charming and rustic fishing town on the Uruguayan coast. After that night, my life was never to be the same again.
As I’m writing this podcast I’m being transported back to my experiences in Uruguay and, to be honest, I don’t even know where to start. My story of Uruguay is one of true love, of heart break and tragedy. A story of magic and serendipity, of manifestation and evolution. It was a dream come true laced with melancholy, a deep sadness. Looking back, I think that Uruguay was my chrysalis phase. The chrysalis phase refers to the middle part of a butterfly’s life. The part when the caterpillar transforms in his cocoon, getting ready to break free and be the butterfly he was born to be. It was a time of deep transformation for me, beginning to learn, for the first time, who I really am.
During those initial days in Uruguay, I fell in love with someone who was to later break my heart completely. I still don’t know if it was the magic of that special romance that kept my heart fixated on Uruguay, or if it was the magic of the place itself but, after that, I couldn’t get Uruguay out of my head. I had fallen head over heels in love with the gorgeous, rustic seaside towns and felt a strong desire to build a life over there.
I spent the next two years visualising my future life on a humble piece of land in the wild Uruguayan nature. I told all of my friends and family that I was going to live there. I told them that I was going to buy land and build my own house and grow my own food and live a sustainable and ecologically conscious, happy and peaceful life. The interesting thing was that, although it seemed to many others like a distant and unrealistic dream, there wasn’t even one cell in my body that didn’t believe that I was going to do this. I have never had such a strong ‘knowing’ of something than I had of knowing that this would be my reality one day.
And, in May 2016, two years after my first visit, that day arrived. I arrived in Punta del Diablo again and got a job working in a popular hostel for backpackers. It was winter season at that time so the hostel was quiet and life was very relaxed. I met Augusto that very first evening and we didn’t leave each others’ sides for the next two years. He had arrived four years before me, on a quest for the same dream. We worked together in the hostel for a few months whilst searching for the perfect piece of Uruguayan wilderness to call home. After deciding on a secluded piece of woodland a few kilometres from town and the beach, we waited until spring arrived before we set up our tent and began the arduous process of clearing the ground and building a shelter for us to sleep in.
Work progressed quickly on the land. Within a few days we had a small shelter and an outside toilet, as well as basic kitchen set up. We had only been on the land for a few weeks before Björk came into our lives. As I write this she is sleeping next to me. She became one of the most important and cherished things to come out of my Uruguayan experience, and she was the light that kept me going in my times of darkness.
And this, my friends, is where part one of my story ‘An English Girl in Uruguay’ ends ! I will finish telling the story in the next podcast episode and don’t worry - I won’t keep you in suspense too long !
I wonder how you’ve found listening to this podcast episode ? There are many descriptive words and the content is not predictable. I wonder if it has been more of a challenge to follow along ? I would love so much to hear from you so let me know your thoughts and any questions you might have by contacting me via the contact form on my website - www.britishenglishlanguage.com.
Thank you so much for joining me for part one of An English Girl in Uruguay ! I hope you enjoyed listening to this episode of The British English Language Podcast and I very much look forward to seeing you in the next one !