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Showing posts from January, 2020

Stories of exile

My granddad helped set up the telegraph line that once ran across Chile, from Santiago to the south.

When he was up a pole in the middle of the 1940s forests of the south, did he ever look at the green landscape to the next place, the next pole ahead, and imagine what would happen when all of Chile was connected?

My grandparents, aunts and uncles ran the post office in La Pintana where my mother, one of the younger siblings would wander. They did regular post office work and received telegrams for the people in the vicinity, which was part of their income after he bought his 1 Acre of farmland there.

The 12 kids would play around with the telegraph between messages on their shifts, chatting in morse to other operators across Chile.

When we finally returned from exile and spent a first Chilean winter at that farm, they had pigs and had once had horses and cows, but still had geese, ducks, chickens and all sorts of other animals, a small enclosed herb garden that said fowl couldn't …