We flew over the Andes very early on Saturday morning, then over the pampas, and into a very foggy Buenos Aires. Here’s the view of the Andes from my plane window:
We toured the Boca Juniors soccer stadium and got to step out onto the edge of the field. The next day we attended a match at a different stadium; I particularly enjoyed getting to cheer for the home team with a loud “¡Gooooool!”
I’ve gotten out and about in the city, such as seeing the Casa Rosada, attending Mass at the Catedral Metropolitana where Pope Francis himself used to celebrate the Mass, and enjoying a huge Argentine steak.
We’ve got a lot of company site visits this week for class. It’s been years since I studied abroad in England, and the intensity of this experience reminds me how much room for growth each person possesses within them throughout their lifetime.
We’ve been keeping very busy, so here are some quick highlights:
We ate at a restaurant themed around Chilean poet Pablo Neruda. We visited an innovation center housed on a college campus. We toured a winery in the Casablanca Valley and walked through the amazing, hilly port city of Valparaíso, often compared to San Francisco. Having spent lots of time in San Francisco visiting my maternal grandparents in my youth, I could definitely see the similarities.
Later this morning we fly to Buenos Aires, Argentina! I have really enjoyed my time in Chile.
Things of note since my previous update: This morning we were in our first class when the floor started shaking. We experienced a 4.9 earthquake.
Also, yesterday as we were on our bus heading back from the stunning Maipo Canyon, we were passing through the town of San José de Maipo when our bus encountered a festival. The street we had planned to take was closed, and it was very tight quarters turning, going in reverse, and getting to another road. I would like to apologize to the people of San José de Maipo for the resulting traffic backup! The town was lovely, by the way.
I enjoyed taking in some sights around the city yesterday. It’s awe-inspiring to see a building towering above the others around it, then to look up and see an Andean peak twice that building’s height looming behind it! This is the view from my hotel room:
For me, the highlight while exploring Santiago yesterday was climbing Cerro Santa Lucia. Castillo Hidalgo sits atop it, a fortress with rewards hidden all around for the observant visitor—statues, walkways, fountains.
This morning I got to go horseback riding in the Andes. The peaks were stunning. My horse, Pluto, enjoyed munching on grass every chance he got.