Buen Vienido a Santiago

Well, after leaving the confines or our Premium Economy seating with a constant flow of air and attention, we paid our welcome fee and, following a distressing few minutes where we cursed ourselves for running so late that our bags had missed the plane, we located our luggage slowly passing around on a conveyor belt a little further away from the one we were standing at.

An uneventful taxi ride to our digs left us wondering if we had somehow been transported to a spanish Julia Creek. Brown, dry, hot, polished and yet also a little shabby, Santiago was not out to impress us at first glance. Then, through the mist (or was it pollution haze?), the Andes came into view, one large mountain in particular rising like a phoenix to the sky, snow capped peaks and all. We don’t do mountains that big in straya I can assure you of that and I am hoping over the next few days we may see more of these magnificent peaks from this City in the valley.

Unfortunately we were too early for check in so we had to spend a couple of hours investigating tourist services and planning our day for tomorrow- I say unfortunately because it is fair say we were feeling a little worse for wear as time travel clearly was not agreeing with us. Sadly upon returning to our hotel in the heat of the day (and yes not unlike the Brisbane summer of late) we discovered I had booked a room with no air-conditioning – and no breeze – although it came highly recommended there is always an explanation when something is too good to be true! The lady running the place is lovely, and the maids running around in white pinafores over their striped blue linen dresses are impressive so at least we are experiencing some local touches however as one is clearly suffering from heat stroke and jet lag one could have done with a major air con in which to recover. A nice pool wouldnt go astray either – maybe we can find one in our next port of call which is yet to be determined but destined to be somewhere near Valpraiso the world heritage listed port city.

Not to be beaten by this South American heat, (and bare in mind we are heading to Cape Horn in week or two which is one of the coldests places on earth where people still actually live), we decided to shower, point the fan our way and pass out for a short time – reminds me of a heat wave in Luxor some years ago when I hadnt yet graduated to airconditioning and vowed I would never do this sort of heat again without it! So if anyone was thinking we were far too pampered going premium economy, our transpacific flight is clearly over and the adventure has begun!

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