Friday, April 10, 2009

Santiago Chile

Section 1-----Pine Mountain Ranch

Hello again from Pine Mountain Ranch. It is spring at the ranch and things are more lazy and laid back now that John is in charge.
The weather is slowly warming up. John is still making a few mistakes. He put Pete the mule in the wrong pasture and Pete promptly leaped over the 4 ft fence and took off down the road.
I think that mule has springs in his feet. He can leap a 5 ft fence from a standstill. It took a couple of hours to catch up with Pete and bring him back to the ranch.

John takes care of the ranch and his wife and daughter look after the greenhouse and do the cooking and the household chores.

Jeff and Squeekers are at the Desert Outpost. They will be there until late fall working out in the desert on maintenance projects. The old desert cabin is getting a makeover and has electricity for the first time ever. Since it is so far off the power grid it has a stand alone system of solar panels and a small wind generator. Well enough about the ranch. Here is our poet with the poem of the week.

Section 2-----Poetry of the week

an.thro.poet.ry by Emma.Lee D

Tail End of Mexico book 2

written six.eight.eight

It's now 12:30 & estoy bebiendo the fullest glass of wine
I've ever seen. My flight leaves in just over an hour &
i had left.over pesos so i figured why not? It was cloudy today so i'm glad to be al aeropuerto.

I've taken 100 pictures here, about 13.5 a day. That's
a lot of pictures. I'm sure Europe will be 3 times worse.
It will be an interesting 36 hours home in Boulder, CO.
I want to save my memoria de mexico at
a 5 star hotel. Futbol plays in the background & I stare
out into a gray runway refracting a gray highway where
the DULL cars drive by. In here it is NEON. ceiling orange
&green &the bar looks like a neon cup of guacamole.

Section 3-----Santiago Chile

Santiago Chile

Rich and I decided to hit Santiago, Chile on the next leg of our South American mini tour. We really didn’t want to leave Rio, truth be told, but we’d committed to seeing a few different countries and cultures and so we had to say goodbye to Brazil and head south.

There was no particular reason we chose Chile. I had worked with a guy who lived in Santiago and a friend of Rich’s had passed through there on his jaunt around the world a few years ago and said it was a great city to hit and that was good enough for me. Rich, my sometimes traveling buddy and all the time best friend, would have preferred a more structured approach, but planning is not and has never been my strong suit.

Which is why we rolled into Chile without a goal, a hotel reservation or the ability to speak Spanish, in spite of the fact that both Rich and I had years of Spanish classes. Rich wanted to consult the tourist bureau, if there was such a thing. I wanted to find something to eat and, frankly, I’m a lot bigger than Rich so we went to find some food.

I always try to eat the local cuisine, if it doesn’t include insects or things that look at me while I’m eating them – neither of which was a problem in Santiago. The capitol city is located in central Chile, and has some of the best food in South America.

If you’re a seafood fan, you definitely need to try the Sopa de Mariscos, a kind of seafood soup. I also recommend you try the Chirimoya Ice Cream, too. No seafood there, just a delicious indigenous fruit.

After Rich found us a decent place to stay at a good price (another benefit of being in Santiago) we dumped our luggage and lit out for Plaza de Armas, the main pedestrian area in the city. Think of an outdoor permanent fair, and you won’t be far off.

There are street performers ranging from dancers to jugglers, a bunch of surprisingly good artists hawking their wares, and a generally good cross section of the people of the city. It was just about too much to take in, and I again wished that we had more time to spend here. Another trip.

Rich wanted to head over to Bandera, which is a collection of outdoor used clothes stores a block or so off of Plaza de Armas. About two dozen of them, and frankly, I couldn’t tell the difference between these and new clothes, except they were about a quarter the price you’d pay in the states. I’m not a big shopper, but Rich has a wife and kids and if we expected them to let him go on these trips, we’d need to do some bribing by coming back bearing gifts.

After that, we turned in for the night. We were tired and I was slightly sunburned and tomorrow we were going to head to what is probably the number one tourist destination in Santiago, Cerro San Cristobal. We’d have to deal with a lot of people, but there’s no better way to see Santiago. But that, unfortunately, will have to wait until part two of this travelogue in two weeks.

Section 4-----Pine Mountain Evening

It is evening once again and we are all gathered around the gas fireplace.Tonight I am trying Dutch Chocolate. This American roast coffee goes well with cake. The chocolate and coffee taste is great for dessert. This coffee comes to us from Well it is getting late and it is time for bed. good night all see you next week.