Our First Time In Santiago (23-26 March)
We spent our first three days of our world adventure in Santiago. I saw many interesting old buildings, ate interesting food and met interesting people. As you may have noticed, I had a very interesting time.
One of the interesting buildings that I saw, had the exterior of a small corner shop, but the interior of a beautiful restaurant. Full of old furniture, and chandeliers. There were many small stores and stalls in the streets, these were full of weird and wonderful things for sale.
I saw some amazing street art. Some told a story and others were just colour to the street. But they were all beautiful contributing to making the street lively.
The busses in Santiago, are old and rickety. They look and sound like they are going to break down at any given moment. The rest of the traffic is also very busy, for example, we were walking down the street, when suddenly, a motorbike came darting towards us at a huge speed. People were scrambling to get out of its way. Also we were in an Uber on our way to the airport, when a taxi came rushing past us a top speed, it looked like it was going to slide off the road any second. In Santiago, pedestrians do not have the right of way, cars just rush past. Other than that, the traffic is not too bad.
We walked through many smaller streets, that were full of old buildings and street art. There were also little stalls with fresh fruit, fresh fruit drinks and fresh food. These were all relatively cheap and very good to eat.
We stayed in the old part of Santiago, it is the more lower class, but still very beautiful. Just two short bus rides away, is a huge modern city with big shopping centres and skyscrapers. You see a massive contrast when going from the old part to the new part.
I learnt a bit more basic Spanish, so I could at least communicate the basics with the local people who mostly do not understand a word of English.
To me, Santiago is an amazing place to visit, but I would probably not decide to live there permanently.
Shaken While Home Alone
Mum and Dad went out to the wine land for the day. We had just finished our school work and were about to put on a movie, when suddenly everything started shaking………………………….
It was about 12 PM, when the windows started rattling, furniture shaking and Kali panicking. She shoved the electronic devices between the pillows on the couch and ordered us to run to the beach. We all followed her.
We ran to the beach under Kali’s command. She had mum’s phone with her and started to try and contact Dad. Unfortunately, the phone did not work, which made her stress even more.
Strangely no one else came running out. After about ten minutes, we decided to go back inside. Everything was quiet and calm. We put on our movie, and waited for Mum and Dad to arrive.
Later when they were home, we found out that these earthquakes happen regularly in the area. “Only run if you see the locals running”.
Back In Santiago
We left our beautiful beach-side apartment in Concon at about 12:15 PM. After a short bus ride to Vina del Mar, we got on the bus to Santiago. The bus ride was pleasant, although, it seemed that every time I was writing something important on the iPad, we would go around a sharp bend or over a bump in the road. Other than that, it was fine.
When we arrived in Santiago, for our third and final time, we went straight to the nearest local bus stop. We had planned to go to the shopping centre as soon as we arrived, because we could only check in at our lodgings at 6 PM. We needed to take two busses. Huddling into an overcrowded orange bus, we completed the first part of the way. We got off the bus and waited for the next bus to arrive. After about fifteen minutes of waiting, it finally came into view. I got aboard but the driver abruptly motioned to me to get off. There was something wrong with the bus. After another ten minutes of waiting, we were allowed to get on.
On arrival at the shopping centre, we noticed that none of the shops were open. Of course………… it was a public holiday. We were all disappointed as we walked towards our apartment. But to our surprise, as we walked through a large park, we saw hundreds of people all having picnics, playing sport and just chatting to each other.
According to the GPS on Dad’s phone, we still had 2.2 kilometres to go. We arrived twenty minutes later with our heavy backpacks. We went in and dropped them on the floor. It was a brand new apartment, we were the first people to stay in it!!!
Dad and I went outside to find something to eat for dinner. We walked down the road, nothing was open except, an extremely expensive café and a pizza restaurant. We went back to our apartment and told the others. We decided on pizza, and went right away. We were extremely hungry!!
The pizza restaurant was completely empty when we got there. We walked in, sat down at a table and started talking to the delighted chef. He spoke a little English, so between him and Dad’s translator, we managed to figure out the menu and order our pizza.
After about 20 minutes, we were served our freshly baked pizzas. As we were eating, we noticed, that the chef took the blackboard menu out onto the sidewalk. The restaurant was only supposed to open now. No wonder there was no one else in the restaurant!
After dinner, we went back to our apartment. I could not wait to get into my warm bed.
– Ruzow –