Archive | June, 2008

Road Trip to La Serena

11 Jun

I’m still recovering from the trip the hubby and I took yesterday. We went to La Serena, a beach city 471 km (292 miles) north of Santiago. He had to meet up with someone at the hospital there for some work related stuff. The hubs thought it would be nice to make a mini trip for me as La Serena is a popular beach destination. I didn’t bargain for leaving at 5:30 in the morning. O.o

The skies didn’t start to lighten up until past 6:30am or so. After 5 hours of driving, including a couple of bathroom stops we finally arrived in La Serena at 10:30 in the morning. Interestingly, we managed to arrive just in time to witness a massive school bus demonstration. I have no idea what they were upset about. They were driving down the main street like a funeral procession. Interestingly, the police were helping to direct traffic and keep the driving peace. Random.

Spend a couple of hours at the local hospital. The hubby finished up his work stuff & we headed to the beach to take a quick look around. I’m told that this place is packed in the summer. Today with 55F degree weather, there was hardly a soul out there. I was kind of disconcerted by the sign I spotted at the beach.

Not a sign you really want to see….

We stopped by this place in a tiny city called Huentelauquen on the way back down for some cheese they’re famous for. (btw… Huentelauquen is pronounced when-teh-la-oo-ken. Say that 5 times fast~) We had some empanadas while being stared at by the local dog. >_<;; He of course having his doggy senses realized that I was an easy target and gave me his best sad dog eyes. Naturally I couldn’t take it and he got a little piece of my empanada.

A little further south of Huentelauquen was Pichidangui where my hubby and his family used to visit for vacationing when he was a kid. A quiet little seaside town. We were hoping to grab a fabulous seafood lunch here, but alas the restaurant was closed. Thankfully those cheese empanadas were pretty filling. Not only that, the fishermen hadn’t gone out to fish, so no local fresh seafood to take home either. :/ We did however go take a look at the shore… and oh MAN was it windy and cold. I mean WINDY and COLD! I could barely keep my balance to take a couple of photos of the rocky shoreline. The rest of the drive home was pretty damn windy. The gusts were pretty strong. At one point when driving over a bridge, a gust blew us a few feet over to the side. We got back home at about 5pm. Had dinner and I crashed out at 7:30.

If you’re interested, you can take a look at the rest of the photos I took HERE.


Classic Video Game Theme Song Quiz

7 Jun

I got 8 out of 10. Beat that! 😛

Classic Video Game Theme Song Quiz

Take it and let me know what score you got!

Tweet tweet~

3 Jun

Added Twitter to my side bar on the left.  You’ll be able to see mini updates on what’s going on w/me between blog posts.  I hope I remember to update it frequently~  ^_^

Starting week #2

3 Jun

Well, I’ve been here for 2 weeks now. In some ways it feels longer than that. In some ways I am already accustomed to the pace here. It isn’t so different from any other big city. I was sick last week with a cold. I’m guessing between the travel fatigue and shift in temperatures my immune system was not at it’s best. Don’t worry kiddies, I’m A-OK now. Going to look into starting Spanish classes soon… and I’m picking stuff up a little at a time.

Here is an odd tidbit of information for you guys.  In Santiago the smog is the worst in the winter. So, I actually have chest aches like I do in L.A. when we have smog warnings.  The explanation about the winter smog is that during the summer months almost of 1/2 the population of Santiago leaves on vacation.  In Chile it is required that everyone receives at least 3 weeks of vacation a year.  .. and take it they do!  (Side note:  I must post about all the other awesome benefits workers get another time… )  Thus even in the summer when smog levels would be higher, there are way less cars on the road.

So, why is the smog so bad?  Well… Santiago in surrounded by mountains + a lot of cars on the road.  It’s the similar to what happens in the San Gabriel Valley, except worse.  When the smog levels get high or are anticipated to get high, the city limits the amount of cars allowed on the road.  They accomplish this by posting a list of several pairs of numbers.  Any cars with license plates ending in those numbers are restricted from being on the road that day.  Not that this system really helps very much. Luckily the rain has really kept the smog from getting very bad these past few weeks.  Below is a shot showing the view from my living room.  Actually you can still see a bit of yellow smog haze even though this was taken the day after it stopped raining.  Nice eh?  Unfortunately I’m told that it isn’t usually this clear.  Oh well better enjoy it while it lasts.