The day started early, for me anyway, with el and benj searching for a much needed breakfast and a cleansing shower from our previous days antics. Instead we gathered our things (not our nice wallets, phones or any valuables that we believed would most definitely be stolen) and began a city hike in search for the city centre and a famous market, in the words of el. Our first attempt was not so successful as apparently our d of e skills had eluded us, demonstrated by the lack of tall beautiful buildings and small mediocre Chileans. What we had in fact stumbled upon was what we compared to the downtown of GTA, complete with its own barking dogs and pedestrians to run over. That was us.
Upon realising we had gone wrong somewhere (the hotel) we returned to the apartment and picked up a map, as well as asking the concierge, and finally began heading in the right direction. After a nice leisurely gander, and a lovely chat with some homeless g’s that resulted in a healthy donation of 10 peso’s (about 1p), we found a mysterious hill with something on top of it. It turned out to be a beautiful castle type building which would have made a quality Instagram picture had we brought our phones.
A quick mourning over the loss of a great snap, and we were on our way again in search of the mysterious market. After many minutes and steps we found a square, not a person, but an area of space that contained many beggars, many restaurants and many public information posters. This suited us perfectly. Thankfully for my legs and my belly the map lead us to the hidden treasure, the market. On a more negative, an unbelievable feeling of disappointment followed, with nothing but fruit, veg and pickpockets on show. And with that, we ate some lunch and returned to the apartment.
Surprisingly we made it back and decided what we needed was food and a beer and went to retrieve steak and chips, and a refreshing pint. The cost? 1 pound each for the food and 1 each for the beer. I was really starting to love Santiago at this point. This romance developed throughout the evening, and after chilling for a good few hours at a bar, and meandering down the river in the sunset, I declared Santiago my favourite place in the world. I say this a lot, however the city has to be up there as one of the best, and I’ve only been here a day. Despite the major displays of affection on show in the park on the way home, and a slightly disappointing steak (it was a lamb chop) I am still feeling overwhelmed at the capital of Chile and I cant wait to explore the country some more.
Shoutout to the youths of Santiago, who instead of terrorising the streets at night and destroying the image of teenagers, spend their free time expressing their love for each other in the open air of the park for all to see. Respect.