The Weekend and Life in General

I leave tomorrow for the states, so the week has been quite busy getting things organized for David for the month that I am going to be gone.

This past weekend, David’s boss, Rick, invited us to go on a “road trip” with him. He picked us up Saturday at 9:00 and we headed out. There wasn’t really a plan, just to go where the road took us. We ended up in San Antonio on the coast. It is a fishing/working port. We walked around the fish market that was located near the water, but across the street.

Eventually, we made our way down to the waterfront. At one end, was another fish/vegetable market. It was interesting, as there were sea lions and seals close to the market. For 40 cents, you could feed them fish. I chose not to, as I didn’t want fishy smelling hands for the rest of the day.

Out on the pier, were fishing boats. People were buying fresh fish from the fishermen. The seals/sea lions were swimming around looking for fish that were thrown overboard.

Along the beach area, was a boardwalk and permanent vendor stalls. They were selling trinkets made from shells. One artist had carvings that he made from swordfish’s bill. Another vendor was selling musical instruments made from what appeared to be gourds. He played them…the sax actually sounded like a saxophone! I have pictures of playing his sax and clarinet at my webshots page.

Out in the harbor were several fishing boats, as well as large cargo ships. It was an interesting combination of small and great!

From San Antonio, we headed north along the coast. There were a variety of small villages with beautiful beaches. One village was Las Cruzes. It was a small, sleepy village with a small beach. We took several pictures there. It was here that I took the picture of the cat statue looking out over the harbor. This village also had a large church, it almost appeared to be a monastery of some sort. I really like this town of all that we saw. I imagine that during the summer months, it is a very busy place!

For the most part, the villages were similar. The main road was paved but the roads off of the main road, were hard packed dirt.
I believe it was outside of El Quisco, on our way to the beach, that we saw a man in the middle of the road with a shovel in one hand and a bucket in the other hand. We couldn’t figure out what that was all about. Coming back, I had a “light bulb” moment! This man had filled in the pot holes in the road and was asking for money for his work! Very creative…which reminds me…the other day, David and I were walking along the street and we saw a man on the bus giving a puppet show. He had made a puppet out of a man’s suit and was holding that in front of him. He had covered his face with a black-type mask. The head of the puppet was over sized and looked like a “muppet”. Again, another example of creative ways to earn money!!

So, back to the travel-log….Outside of Algarrobo, on a beautiful beach were condos that had recently been built. They were beautiful and such a contrast to the small bungalows that we had been seeing along the way. I think that they had recently been finished and were up for sale.

The road ended in Algarrobo, so we headed inland toward the Casa Blanca wine region. This area, again, reminded me of California…rolling hills, ranches along the way. It also reminded me of Jarabacoa, Dominican Republic where I lived 20 some odd years ago.

Eventually, we made a big loop and ended up back in San Antonio where we had a early dinner. We had the seafood platter. It was wonderful. The fish was lightly steamed or raw. We had clams, shrimp, mussels, a white fished called “loco” was great! Also, on the plate was Piure…it wasn’t very good. It was red and had a very strong flavor. Cervechi rounded off the plate. Cervechi is a popular dish down here. It is basically raw fish minced and mixed with lemon juice. I have had it with clams, shrimp and salmon. It is very, very good.

So, we sat at the restaurant, looking out over the water, eating wonderful fish and listening to Il Divo…one of my favorite CDs….another magical moment in Chile!

We got home at 7:30 or so. It was nice as we went through the downtown area. It had never occurred to me that all the beautiful, historic buildings would be illuminated at night, and the fountains, too. David and I will definitely have to make our way down there some night to take pictures.

Sunday, was a lazy day. Those are so nice to have once in awhile! We met Rick at 1:30 and headed for the fish market (El Mercado Central) for lunch. It was a cold, dreary day.

When you enter the fish market, you are inundated with people trying to get you to eat at their restaurant. It can be sort of annoying to say the least…but, they are just doing their job. After walking around, we settled on a restaurant and had fish soup. Oh my gosh, it was good! It was full of fish and hot. It really hit the spot for such a dreary day.

We saw Piure, the red fish from the day before, at one of the stalls. It was disgusting looking. It looked like sludge from the bottom of the ocean. No wonder it taste so bad! Someone told me that it was from the crab family, but I didn’t see any resemblance of a crab!

Before leaving, David found spotted a bottle of “Inca Cola”. This is a soda from Peru. He had mentioned it after returning from one of his Peru trips. When he said “cola”, I imagined a dark drink like Coke. However, this is a light yellow color and has a butter rum flavor. It was good. I, also, bought a local fruit from here…I think it is called Chimoya. It is a large, green fruit with a white pulp and large seeds. I tried it when I got home. It was OK, but nothing that I would want a steady diet of.

So, that is it for now. I will try to log-on one more time after I get back to the states, before I leave for Vietnam. I am not taking a computer to Vietnam, so will have lots to write about when I get back. Again, thanks for all the positive feedback that I have gotten from writing my blog. It is really fun sharing our adventures with you through this webpage…glad that you are enjoying it.

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