Living under mountains
May 15, 2010, 11:51 pm
Filed under: travel


Originally uploaded by cobismith.

There’s something captivating about living under mountains. Here in Santiago, the mountains are shrouded in smog half of the time. Yesterday was such a day, but it rained last night.

Tim and I had been out at a bar with some new friends and walked home in the rain through the park around 1am. Here rain is a good omen, signalling that the next day will bring clearer skies and cleaner air. So I awoke and left Tim sleeping to venture out towards Cerro San Cristobel, in Santiago’s giant metropolitan park, for some photos.

We’re conventiently located within walking distance of the fine restaurants in Providencia, like El Huerto, where we went for dinner last night, the bustling nightlife of Bellavista and the funky designer shops around Lastarria. I find the names of these suburbs in Santiago as charming as their streets.

However the highway at the base of our building is an unfortunate distraction. If we move back to Santiago later in the year, when the worst of the smog season is over, I think we’ll move to the tiny suburb of Lastarria or nearby Bellas Artes, aptly named with its many galleries and museums. Alternatively we’ll move closer to Pedro de Valdivia in Providencia, among the wide, tree-lined boulevards filled with cafes and restaurants.

But all of those places are within 20 minutes walk from where we live now, so the Chilean consulate in Australia, who recommended I live around here, certainly gave good advice.

In a couple of weeks we’re moving up to Arica, at the northernmost tip of Chile, for two months. It’s cheaper up there, and warmer, with clean air and good surf. We’ll both work on our laptops and live cheaply for 2 months, with some side trips to the Atacama desert and Peru, before returning for a month of the very expensive snow season in central Chile, then perhaps skiing in Argentina for the start of Spring.

Budgets permitting… we’ll see how our international work goes over the next two months!

For now, I’m still enthralled by the breathtaking mountain views here in Santiago.


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