Thursday, December 6, 2007

Favorite Things: Cigarrette Boxes

This is a very simple favorite thing about Chile: the pictures on the cigarette boxes.

Now, don't worry anyone, I haven't picked up a smoking habit (other than being smokin' on the beach... heh), Chile just has very distinct cigarette boxes. As part of an effort to curb the raging chimney of the Chilean population, the government has mandated that more warnings be printed on all cigarette boxes. The one shown below is a newer model; there's also a guy with a hole in his neck and a huge "THESE CIGARETTES ARE KILLING YOU!" message. The warning labels on the back read like Truth ads, including descriptions of the chemicals as tar and rat poison.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Favorite Things: Los Cerros

Next on the list of things to love/miss about Chile: the topography of Valparaiso.

Sandwiched between the bay and a series of sharp hills smashed together, the city of Valparaiso truly is a city of interesting topography. Each hill has its own personality: Cerros Concepcion and Alegre are touristy and wealthy, Cerro Artilleria has a huge old fort, Cerro Bellavista has a open-air museum of famous murals... I'd continue, but there's 24 in all!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Favorite Things: The Beach

Next on the list of things I love and will miss of Chile: the ocean.

I ride past 20 minutes of beach every Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday to go to school, and I walk 30 minutes to get the the closest beach several times a week. There's penguins and sea lions, naked babies running around, and people selling popsicles. Alone or with friends, it's paradise.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Favorite Things: My Chicas

Next entry in the series of favorite things: my bestest friends. These girls have been all over with me, literally and figuratively, and I love 'em all to death. Thank goodness for facebook, road trips, and frequent flyer miles, because these friendships are in for the long haul.


I hate goodbyes, and they've just begun. Boo.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Favorite Things: The Market

This is the first entry in a series of things I love/will miss about Chile. Today, the market:

Housed in a block-sized green and yellow building across the street from the ISA office and next to some campus buildings, the market is one of my favorite daily places. Filled with people, fruit and veggies, there's life on all sides and good sights, with the occasional good smell (though horse urine is more common). I'll miss the delicious fresh produce and the bustle of so much movement, but I won't miss getting whistled at by the men working as I walk by.

Mama Said...

Despite my mother's consistent and caring reminders, I've avoided sunscreen fairly successfully for the majority of my self-dependent years. I hate the smell, I hate the feel, I hate the process of putting it on. My half-latina genes always did enough to get me tan without burning. Apparently, not in Chile.

The proximity to the hole in the ozone layer and a culture of tanning (because being Latino here isn't tan enough, it seems) equates to a ridiculously high rate of skin cancer in Chile. Though I fortunately don't count myself among those numbers, I am currently suffering from the worst sunburn of my life. My skin is smarting and red from the nape of the back of my neck to my heels, saving only white lines from my bikini top and a comparatively bleach white bottom. Ouch. Shoulda listened to my mom...