Flickr, by Enrique Campo

Ser Migrante en Chile

Ser migrante en Chile: Se migra todos los días, cada día.

Story by Juan Carlos Pérez Jerez. Edited by Melaina Dyck
Chile, South America
Published on Saturday, 6. June 2020

Reading time: 2 minutes 30 seconds.

This story is also available in GB



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Ser migrante en Chile: Se migra todos los días, cada día.

Soy Juan Carlos, tengo 49 años. Nací en Colombia. Vivo en Chile hace 22 años. Casi la mitad de mi vida he estado fuera del lugar en que nací.

Siempre quise conocer otros lugares. Colombia en los años 80 y 90 era un desafío: La violencia del narcotráfico, la guerra entre el ejército y la guerrilla, la aparición de los paramilitares, el fracaso del estado. En fin, para muchos Colombianxs, era un país en guerra y salir era la única forma de sobrevivir física y emocionalmente.

Comencé a viajar gracias al teatro, con una obra que trataba sobre un viaje. La obra, ‘El Hilo de Ariadna’ era el viaje de Teseo al interior de un laberinto.[1] Era un viaje al interior de sí mismo, un viaje de auto descubrimiento. Así es para muchos de nosotros que migramos: El minotauro viaja dentro de nosotros.

Mi primer viaje fue a Chile, en 1993. Después, viajé a Europa y así se fue instalando el espíritu viajero, trashumante y nómade. Cuando se descubre una parte del mundo se quiere conocer todo. En 1996, terminé la universidad y quería conocer América en bicicleta. Viajé con mi hermano por la Panamericana. Ecuador, Perú, Chile, Brasil, Bolivia, Venezuela eran los puertos que queríamos recorrer. Al final, el camino nos trajo hasta Chile y aquí me quedé. El amor es una fuerza poderosa. Las ganas de vivir en paz también.

En 1997, me instalé en Santiago de Chile. No era fácil ser migrante en Chile. Yo tenía algunxs conocidxs que me ofrecieron un lugar donde vivir y comer. En aquellos años estaba el estigma contra lxs Colombianxs por el narcotráfico y la violencia, pero al mismo tiempo estaba la idea de que lxs colombianxs hablamos el mejor español de Hispanoamérica (por lo menos eso creíamos lxs colombianxs) así que mi acento era un arma de doble filo.

Tengo el amor de Ximena, Leonardo y del gato, tengo trabajo, amigxs y una vida. En estos años he podido apreciar el cambio de Chile y el aporte que hacemos los migrantes.

Hoy Chile vive un momento histórico: la Constitución heredada de la dictadura será cambiada por una en la que lxs chilenxs y algunxs inmigrantes podemos participar[2], pero también el COVID-19 ha hecho que muchxs hayan decidido el retorno a sus países. Así estamos en viajes paralelos: uno político, otro al interior de sí mismos y otro de retorno al origen. Parece que, una vez viajerx, siempre viajerxs.


Notas

[1] El mito griego de Teseo y el hilo de Ariadna nos habla de la forma como el amor nos ofrece una vía para vencer a nuestros monstruos internos (Minotauro) y encontrar la salida de los laberintos. También hace referencia al sentido trágico de la existencia.

[2] Según la ley chilena los extranjeros que cumplan más de 5 años desde la obtención de la visa de permanencia definitiva en el país, pueden participar como votantes en las distintas elecciones


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Juan Carlos Pérez Jerez

Juan Carlos Pérez Jerez

Hi! My name is Juan. I am 49 years old, and I'm a graphic designer and university professor at Universidad Diego Portales in Chile. I hold a Masters Degree in Political Communication. I am also an amateur actor. Originally I'm from Bogota, Columbia, but I lived in Santiago de Chile for the past 22 years.

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