Last weekend, we returned from a two week visit to everyone's favorite skinny country, Chile. Really, flying over it, you can see the ocean out one window, and the Andes out the other. And that's it; it is all Argentina from there.
We'll focus on Santiago for this post. But first, a little information about getting there. Because we used miles to get our tickets this past summer, we had a pretty wacky flight routing: San Francisco -> Toronto -> Santiago, making for seventeen hours in the air total. This makes for a good time to catch up on movies. And by the way, Air Canada has good equipment and service these days, so check them out. Too bad they fly through Toronto airport, which tries to foil this good experience at every turn. Anyhow, as an American, landing in Santiago means $140 before customs will let you out of the airport. This fee covers the life of your passport. Bionica's passport expires in three months. Oh well. Fifteen minutes later via taxi, and you are in Santiago.
We saw many of the sights, like the Plaza de Armas (the original 'town square' from the city founded in 1541) and La Moneta (the presidential building). In addition to being the current executive office and residence, La Moneta is also where Pinochet carried out his military coup and overthrew Allende. A brutal regime followed. This was only 38 years ago, and is more evidence how far Santiago, and Chile, have come in a short amount of time.