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dorns’s Travel Diary

Monday, 18 Apr 2005

Location: Santiago, Chile

MapHello Oz

We are still in Santiago nerding it up. On the weekend we had our fist little trip away from santiago to Valparasio wich is about two hours west on the coast of chile. The country on the way to the coast is very hilly so its just a series of tunnels through the hills. There isnt much arable land between here and the coast and what little there is, is mostly covered in vinvards. We caught a bus down which cost around $A10 and the busses were really new and comfortable.

We arrived in Valparasio at around 3pm and decided to walk into the city. We decided it would be nice to walk along the water and have a bit of a look. Only to discover that there was a train track and a shipping dock between us and the water. Needless to say there wasnt much to look at. After walking through a very ordinary part of this town that was meant to be so picturesque for around half an hour we were begining to wonder what was so special. We consulted the bible (lonely planet quide to SA) and discovered we werent far from were we were meant to be. Valparasio has a narrow strip of flat ground before it heads up a quite steep hill. So up the hill we went. The first three hostels we went to were full, starting to think we should have booked ahead. Then this old guy with a bung leg latched on to us and proceded to try and find some accomidation for us. Finally we were in luck a B&B. We were shown the room the left alone. We had no key, no idea where the toilets were or if we had to sign in at all. We had a look out the window to find the people driving off. It was a weird little place that had had a lot of owner renervations and wasnt relly set up or paying customers. Ill attach some photos so you can see what i mean.

Finally they return and we are given so keys. Off we go into town to have a beer. the first place we went had a down stairs that was meant to look like a cave, but looked more like a 70s porn set (not that i know what that looks like). Then to a few more dodge bars full of dirty old men. Im sure there are young people that go out and have fun in this country, but to date we have been unable yo find them. Of course in my true style when we got home i pulled out the keys to my place in santiago and wondered why we couldnt get in. They opened the door from the inside becase they heard us scratching around. I had totally forgotten i had two sets of keys in my pocket and it wasnt till the morning that i realised why the keys woundnt work.

Went we go some where to eat we just point at the menu and hope that its something we may want to eat. So far it hasnt worked too bad. We look around a bit and went on a harbour cruise (a ride in a little boat for about 20min). The people here are not scared of a little colour on their houses over here, let me tell you. Nothing really exciting happened just lots of walking, food and beers. Ill keep you updated.

Chao for now