Chile 4

It is now the 8th of December, and we are LOVING Santiago, Chile.  It is a great city.  We have liked many of the places we have visited, but this area of Chile is one which we would consider moving to.  Maybe, in a few years, when we slow down a bit, we may spend a few months, every few years, in Chile.

I know that these pictures may not be very exciting, but we wanted to give you a taste of what Santiago is like.

Very clean and modern.

And, again, this is not an isolated area of Santiago....

With the large trees hanging over the streets and the wide sidewalks, it feels almost like a mid-western city in the United States.
With trendy sidewalk cafe's......

This area was more like Sunset or Santa Monica Boulevard, in Hollywood!

And super residential neighborhood.

Much like the nicer areas of Newport Beach or Hollywood Hills, California!

This is the view from the 6th floor condominium, where the BMW is staying while we return home for Christmas. 

Jose's brother was nice enough to offer us a parking spot for the bike, during our trip home.

Same condominium, looking another direction.

Again, very modern and very clean.

Sandy and I are not world traveler's and did not expect South America to be this modern.

What was I thinking?

Santiago is a fantastic city!

And this is where the old bike gets a brief respite from the travels.

8,000 miles down, and only 16,000 miles to go!

We leave the bike and have dinner...

Then walk back to the hotel for our last night in Santiago...

We will be leaving the middle of summer and 6:30 sunrises and 8:45 sunsets......

But in Santiago, it will still be "Christmas"!

On the 9th we took a cab to the airport.  I don't know what I was thinking but we got to the airport 11 hours prior to our departure time, and checked in.  Then we rode a bus back to town to get a few final "Then and Now" photos done.

The hotel owner of where we stayed for almost a week, in Santiago.

It would be hard to find anybody more cordial than Mr. Rojas, the owner of the Thayer Hotel. 

What a gentleman!

So we get to the airport, then catch a bus back to the center of Santiago, to take more "Then and Now" pictures.  The first picture is from Frank Carpenter's 1925 book, "Carpenter's World Travels, Familiar Talks About Countries and People".

Who keeps watering all the plants and trees?

Another picture, also from Sydney Clark's book of 1954, "The West Coast of South America".  Santa Lucia was the most photographed location of all the books we have on South America.

If somebody does not stop watering the vegetation, you won't be able to see many of the landmarks in Santiago!

The following "Then and Now" is from Che Guevara's, The Motorcycle Diaries.  The trip was taken in 1952.

Exact same spot.....

Had to move about 10 feet to the right.  Not the same spot, but a better picture.  A lot of growth since 1952!

The next "Then and Now" is from 1925 and Frank Carpenter's book.  It is a major Museum in Santiago.

There was a major earthquake in 1981 which required the rebuilding of the front facade of the museum. 

That pretty much wraps up South America for 2005, for us!  Time to head home for the Holiday's, but can't wait to return.

The sun, getting close to rising, over northern Mexico.
Over our house in Corona.

Perris Lake, below, and the mountains near Big Bear in the background.

Downtown Los Angeles.

We couldn't have asked for a nicer day to arrive home. 

The weather was great!

Beautiful sunrise at LAX.

What a pleasant ending of a 14 hour commute!

Hope you enjoyed the pictures and did not get too bored.  We did a lot of research prior to the trip, and thought we knew exactly what to expect.  We had impressions of what we thought we would encounter, but South America was very different than expected.  It is a fantastic travel destination.  Try it!  You may like it!

 I hope the abundance of pictures helps to give you a more accurate picture of what South America has to offer!

Just a few thoughts and observations...

1)    We were surprised by how many people, in this day and age, live without running water.  Something we all take for granted!

2)    We take medical care for granted.  Never again!

3)    We often take our friends and families for granted.  Never again!

4)    I thought that riding the motorcycle would get old.  Never did!  Looked forward to it, everyday, and can't wait to return!.

5)    We are not wealthy or rich, but sincerely feel like we are the most fortunate and luckiest people on earth, being able to learn and grow through an Adventure like this.  I will never take for granted, how fortunate we have been!

6)    This thing we live on is BIG!

And finally a sincere "Thank You" to all the motorcycle riders and "Adventure Riders" that sent us emails of ideas and support during the trip.  You have no idea how motivating it is to get notes from all over the world!

That wraps up South America for 2005......

But we are looking forward to 2006 and resuming the Adventure, a little older and wiser!

For "Chile 5" hit the "Next Button"...    For "Chile 3" hit the "Back Button"...

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